Back in 2020, the air freight industry experienced the same pandemic slump as many others. However, within the international trade sector, it is perhaps the aviation industry that has experienced the biggest dip. With local and international restrictions came the dramatic drop in demand for passenger air freight. Seeing as a considerable percentage of passenger flight space is given to cargo movement, this has seen the availability of space on scheduled flights plummet too.

The UK Government, alongside many other authorities worldwide, rushed to implement support for the industry but even this hasn’t been enough to prevent many businesses in the industry from running into significant trouble.

Moving Into 2021

In July 2021, the International Air Transport Association released their data into the international air freight market. It showed that May 2021 saw the largest increase in growth since pre-pandemic. In fact, comparing May 2019 and May 2021, there was a 9.4% increase and global trade was recorded as having increased in the past 4 months by 0.5%. These signs are an indication that international trade is back on the up after global closures put a halt to much cargo movement throughout 2020.

Key Reasons

In many ways, this increase was somewhat predictable. The restrictions and closures globally, alongside the grounding of flights and the ‘stay at home call’ caused such a significant drop in activity, that the consequential lifting would cause a spike in contrast. While each individual economy opens back up, there has been a relative shift in the consumption of both goods and services. Orders placed throughout the pandemic that were delayed in airports and storage locations are now back on the move.

In turn, cost-competitiveness has begun to balance out. Air freight was one of the first sectors to be impacted and, with the increase in demand and lack of capacity, the prices shot upwards. Some estimates show a 12x increase in air cargo compared with sea shipping at its worst. Statistics from May 2021 show that this had depreciated down to 6x’s more. So while there still exists a financial implication when working with air freight, this has reduced significantly.

Radius Warehouse and Logistic Services have over 25 years of experience supporting businesses in worldwide cargo movement – specifically the USA and Far East inbound and outbound movement through air freight. Our team of experts have the knowledge and experience to help support your cargo movement requirements. If you have any questions, queries or would like to discuss our freight forwarding support, get in contact with us here today.