Air cargo traffic recovers to pre-pandemic levels


PARIS — Air freight traffic has returned to pre-pandemic levels, the International Air Transport Association mentioned Tuesday, however passenger traffic slumped additional in January.

IATA world demand as measured in tonnes of cargo shipped per kilometer was up 1.1 p.c in contrast to January 2019 and rose by three p.c from December 2020.

Capacity is down practically 20 p.c from January 2019 and fell 5 p.c from December 2020, nevertheless, as airways have taken out of service passenger jets that additionally transport cargo.

But for passenger traffic, which generates some 85 p.c of revenues for airways, the scenario has gone “from bad to worse”, mentioned IATA, which represents most airways.

Passenger traffic, measured as income per passenger kilometer, was down by 72 p.c in January from the identical month final yr.

That is worse than the 69.7 p.c annual drop registered in December.

Airlines misplaced out on $510 billion in income in 2020, IATA mentioned final month, however it hopes for a robust restoration in traffic within the second half of this yr as international locations roll out their vaccination campaigns.

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