Air cargo volumes in the Asia-Pacific region fell nearly 13 percent in January compared to a year earlier.
The downturn helped push global air traffic down more than 7 percent in January, according to Airports Council International.
However, the year-over-year results were skewed by early Chinese New Year holidays. “With Chinese industry closing for the holidays, major airports in the region saw sharp declines,” Airports Council International said. “Shanghai and Hong Kong decreased 22.8 and 17.5 percent, respectively, for January.”
ACI figures revealed that 16 or the top 20 airports in terms of freight volume experienced declines in January compared to a year earlier. Incheon in Korea, Anchorage in the U.S. and the European hubs of Paris and Frankfurt saw double-digit year-over-year declines in air freight traffic.
ACI World’s Economics Director Rafael Echevarne said the January statistics were indicative of the “mixed” picture evident in global cargo markets this year.
“The December 2011 figures showed us that air freight was stabilizing to the levels of 2010,” he added. “However, while the Chinese New Year is playing a role in January’s recent decline, the shroud of uncertainty hanging over global air freight makes it difficult to predict future growth patterns in the short run, particularly under such volatility across regions.”
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