International Air Transport Association delivers downbeat prediction for Middle East freight market amid global slowdown
Air cargo freight volume growth is expected to remain subdued for months to come for Gulf carriers, according to the International Air Transport Association (IATA).
The authority made the prediction in a report that showed that freight volumes in the Middle East grew by 3.8 percent in June.
While this was an improvement on the May figure of 2.7 percent, it is this is well below the average five-year rate of 9.5 percent, IATA said, adding that capacity increased 4.5 percent.
"Growth for first half of 2018 was 4.3 percent year-on-year, and the expectation is for volume growth to remain modest in the months to come," IATA said.
Globally, IATA said air cargo demand growth rose 2.7 percent in June, compared to the same period the year before. This continues the slowdown in air cargo growth that began earlier in 2018. Growth for the first half of 2018 stands at 4.7 percent, less than half the growth rate in 2017.
"Air cargo continues to be a difficult business with downside risks mounting. We still expect about 4 percent growth over the course of the year. But the deterioration in world trade is a real concern," said Alexandre de Juniac, IATA’s director general and CEO.