We see increased strategic opportunities in the air freight market for 2013. The significant macroeconomic challenges that impacted volumes in 2012 will give way to higher growth figures in developing regions such as Asia and West Africa, as well as emerging markets such as South America. Increasing middle class incomes and other macroeconomic factors in these markets will positively impact growth and the need for faster supply chains in various trade lanes.
On the downside, we will continue to see a global shift from air to ocean freight if rising fuel costs don’t stabilize. For some commodities, however, air freight is still the transportation mode that opens the door to more opportunities.
As the need for leaner supply chains with end-to-end solutions grows, the reaction time it takes to increase demand will determine air freight’s value in the supply chain. Moving along these lines of faster end-to-end solutions, innovation of automated processes such as paperless airway bills should play a major role in air freight efficiency. Overall sustainability will improve as many carriers due for a fleet rollover introduce more efficient planes this year.