May international air cargo traffic 9.4% above Pre-COVID-19 levels

Α Decrease font Enlarge font
May international air cargo traffic 9.4% above Pre-COVID-19 levelsDemand continued its strong growth trend

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) released May 2021 data for global air cargo markets showing that demand continued its strong growth trend.

As comparisons between 2021 and 2020 monthly results are distorted by the extraordinary impact of COVID-19, unless otherwise noted, all comparisons to follow are to May 2019 which followed a normal demand pattern.

Global demand, measured in cargo tonne-kilometers (CTKs*), was up 9.4% compared to May 2019. Seasonally adjusted demand rose by 0.4% month-on-month in May, the 13th consecutive month of improvement.  
The pace of growth slowed slightly in May compared to April which saw demand increase 11.3% against pre-COVID-19 levels (April 2019). Notwithstanding, air cargo outperformed global goods trade for the fifth consecutive month.
North American carriers contributed 4.6 percentage points to the 9.4% growth rate in May. Airlines in all other regions except for Latin America also supported the growth.
Capacity remains constrained at 9.7% below pre-COVID-19 levels (May 2019) due to the ongoing grounding of passenger aircraft. Seasonally adjusted capacity rose 0.8% month-on-month in May, the fourth consecutive month of improvement indicating that the capacity crunch is slowly unwinding.
Underlying economic conditions and favorable supply chain dynamics remain supportive for air cargo:
- Global trade rose 0.5% in April.
- The Purchasing Managers Indices (PMIs) - leading indicators of air cargo demand - show that business confidence, manufacturing output, and new export orders are growing at a rapid pace in most economies.
- The cost-competitiveness of air cargo relative to that of container shipping has improved. Pre-crisis, the average price of air cargo was 12 times more expensive than sea shipping. In May 2021 it was six-time more expensive.
“Propelled by strong economic growth in trade and manufacturing, demand for air cargo is 9.4% above pre-crisis levels. As economies unlock, we can expect a shift in consumption from goods to services. This could slow growth for cargo in general, but improved competitiveness compared to sea shipping should continue to make air cargo a bright spot for airlines while passenger demand struggles with continued border closures and travel restrictions,” said Willie Walsh, IATA’s Director-General.  

MAY 2021
% VS MAY 2019
WORLDSHARE1 CTK ACTK CLF(%-PT)​2 CLF(LEVEL)​3
Total Market
100%
9.4%
-9.7%
10.0%
57.2%
Africa
2.0%
23.1%
-1.8%
10.1%
50.2%
Asia Pacific
32.6%
2.7%
-15.7%
11.6%
64.6%
Europe
22.3%
6.0%
-16.9%
14.1%
65.6%
Latin America
2.4%
-14.3%
-23.3%
4.4%
42.3%
Middle East
13.0%
13.9%
-7.5%
11.1%
58.9%
North America
27.8%
21.6%
2.0%
7.6%
46.9%

(1) % of industry CTKs in 2020   (2) Change in load factor vs same month in 2019    (3) Load factor level

May Regional Performance

Asia-Pacific airlines saw demand for international air cargo increase 5.3% in May 2021 compared to the same month in 2019. This was a decrease compared to the previous month (5.9%) due to a slight slowdown in growth in several large trade routes such as Within Asia. International capacity remained constrained in the region, down 16.9% versus May 2019. As was the case in April, the region’s airlines reported the highest international load factor at 75.2%. 

North American carriers posted a 25.5% increase in international demand in May 2021 compared to May 2019. This was on par with April’s performance (25.4%) and the strongest of all regions. Underlying economic conditions and favorable supply chain dynamics remain supportive for air cargo carriers in North America. International capacity grew by 1.6% compared with May 2019.

European carriers posted an 5.7% increase in demand in May 2021 compared to the same month in 2019. This was a decrease in performance compared to the previous month (11.5%) due to a slight slowdown in growth on key trade routes including Europe – Asia and Within Europe. International capacity decreased by 17.3% in May 2021 versus May 2019, remaining unchanged from the previous month. 

Middle Eastern carriers posted a 14.1% rise in international cargo volumes in May 2021 versus May 2019. This was a slight decrease compared to the previous month (15.6%). Seasonally adjusted volumes remain on a robust upward trend. International capacity in May was down 6.1% compared to the same month in 2019, a robust improvement from the 10.1% drop in April.

Latin American carriers reported a decline of 14% in international cargo volumes in May compared to the 2019 period.  This was the worst performance of all regions, but a significant improvement compared to the previous month, which saw a 32.3% drop in demand. Seasonally adjusted demand also rose strongly in May. International capacity decreased 24.9% compared with May 2019, an improvement over the 52.3% decrease in April.

African airlines’ cargo demand in May increased 24.5% compared to the same month in 2019. This was a decrease in performance compared to the previous month (34.0%) due to a slowdown in trade flows between Africa and Asia. May international capacity increased by 0.5% compared to May 2019, remaining relatively unchanged from April.   

RELATED TOPICS: GreeceGreek tourism newsTourism in GreeceGreek islandsHotels in GreeceTravel to GreeceGreek destinationsGreek travel marketGreek tourism statisticsGreek tourism report

Photo Source: Wikimedia Commons License: CC-BY-SA Copyright: Dtom

Tornos
  1. 27/09 16:47

    UNWTO and Didier Drogba join forces to build opportunity for African youth

  2. 27/09 15:52

    Greek Tourism Minister receives German Ambassador

  3. 27/09 14:19

    SKY Express to connect Thessaloniki with Larnaca in Cyprus as of October 31

  4. 27/09 14:02

    Greece launches new website on protected regions, mountain shelters and winter ski resorts

  5. 27/09 12:15

    "Paris-Athens: Birth of Modern Greece" exhibition opens at the Louvre Museum

  6. 27/09 11:35

    The State of Online Gambling in Greece

  7. 27/09 11:02

    One killed and nine injured after 5.8 Richter earthquake shakes Greek island of Crete

  8. 25/09 18:10

    UNWTO joins as co-organizer of Barcelona Future of Tourism World Summit in Spain

  9. 25/09 17:55

    IATA urges Kenya to reduce PCR test fees to promote air travel and economic recovery

  10. 24/09 21:38

    Media report: Greek universities won't go remote again during pandemic

  11. 24/09 16:08

    70% of Europeans plan to travel by January 2022 with Greece in their top-10 list

  12. 24/09 16:03

    Greek regions placed under curfew over Covid-19 infections

  13. 24/09 10:57

    Alica Ѕchmidt, the sexiest athlete in the world is in the Greek island of Crete

  14. 24/09 10:43

    Greek PM to address the United Nations General Assembly in New York

  15. 24/09 09:33

    Athens Acropolis site to close down on Saturday afternoon for EU event

  16. 24/09 08:25

    ARCAthens co-curates the 7th Athens Biennale ECLIPSE on September 24

  17. 24/09 07:19

    European Heritage Days 2021 marked in Greece on September 24-26

  18. 24/09 06:45

    PM to Bloomberg: Greece had a very good tourist season in 2021

  19. 24/09 05:54

    Greece registers 2,125 new Covid-19 cases and 31 fatalities on Thursday

  20. 23/09 16:06

    Arcturos Sanctuary to give home to three rare Eurasian lynxes in Greece

  21. 23/09 15:57

    Greek organic farm wins two gold awards at the 'Great Taste Awards 2021' in London

  22. 23/09 15:37

    'Under the Light of Apollo: The Louvre in Delphi' exhibition inaugurated in Greece

  23. 23/09 14:27

    Wine helping tourism recover in Greece

  24. 23/09 14:01

    Cyprus to participate in EXPO2020 to be organized in Dubai

  25. 23/09 13:43

    Greek Island of Milos presented by Louis Vuitton in new ad campaign

  26. 23/09 12:49

    World Tourism Organization organizes First World Sports Tourism Congress

  27. 23/09 12:22

    Council of Rectors in favour of in-person attendance at Greek universities

  28. 23/09 11:32

    Harvard University and Tufts University hold conference on Greek Revolution

  29. 23/09 10:50

    Greek Post Office has begun using Chinese-made robotic mail sorters

  30. 23/09 09:10

    IATA urges Ethiopian government to maintain support for aviation sector

  31. 22/09 23:28

    Media report: Despite COVID-19 rise, Greece won't tighten health measures

  32. 22/09 22:43

    Real estate taxes for 2021 posted by Greece's tax service online

  33. 22/09 21:39

    Five lesser known Greek islands featured in Condé Nast Traveler

  34. 22/09 21:02

    Greece records 2,329 new Covid-19 infections and 26 fatalities on Wednesday

  35. 22/09 20:52

    Investment ministers of Greece and Saudi Arabia discuss strategic cooperation

  36. 22/09 20:35

    Athens Acropolis Museum upgrades services with new, interactive website

  37. 22/09 19:48

    Cyprus narrows its safe list down to three EU countries for tourist arrivals

  38. 22/09 17:10

    IATA announces speakers and agenda for the World Air Transport Summit in Boston

  39. 22/09 15:06

    2022 Edition IATA manuals reflecting vital airline standard updates now available

  40. 22/09 13:56

    UNWTO: Urgent global call for commitment to a decade of climate action in tourism

  41. 21/09 19:00

    Greek government spokeperson: 'This is now a pandemic for the unvaccinated'

  42. 21/09 17:03

    US Navy will add second base at Souda Bay on Greek island of Crete

  43. 21/09 15:10

    Sector chiefs: Revenues from Greek tourism could reach €12 bln this year

  44. 21/09 13:45

    U.S. to relax travel restrictions permitting entry for vaccinated European visitors

  45. 21/09 12:55

    IATA on US decision to lift COVID-19 travel restrictions from certain countries

  46. 21/09 12:52

    Temperatures to plunge up to 9C below seasonal average in Greece this week

  47. 21/09 11:26

    Third dose vaccination appointments for those over 60 to open in Greece on September 30

  48. 20/09 17:11

    French president and wife visit the Athens Acropolis on Friday

  49. 20/09 16:59

    Norwegian Ambassador to Athens: Changes in Greek energy sector are impressive

  50. 20/09 16:48

    Greek Education Minister notes high rate of vaccination among students

  51. 20/09 16:13

    Monica Bellucci in Athens for three nights for play about Greek diva Maria Callas

  52. 20/09 16:06

    World Tourism Day 2021 theme coincides with Cyprus National Tourism Strategy

  53. 20/09 15:54

    Travel and Leisure: Greece dominates list of top-20 islands of Europe

  54. 20/09 14:16

    Bank of Greece: Greek travel receipts soared 139.7% during first seven months in 2021

  55. 20/09 13:36

    Greek government spokesperson: The Athens Declaration a milestone for EU Med 9

  56. 20/09 12:04

    The Greek National Opera returns to Stavros Niarchos Hall in Athens

  57. 19/09 21:20

    Deputy Education Minister: High vaccination rate in Greek universities encouraging

  58. 19/09 20:00

    Greece to administer third dose of Covid vaccines to those older than 60

  59. 19/09 19:26

    1,305 new Covid-19 cases and 33 fatalities recorded in Greece on Sunday

  60. 18/09 16:43

    Air passenger traffic in Greece “took off” in August

  61. 16/09 19:31

    Metro will not be reaching Athens Airport station for several hours on Friday and Saturday

  62. 16/09 19:22

    Greece records 2,322 new covid-19 infections and 42 fatalities on Thursday

  63. 16/09 18:41

    Athens Acropolis site to shut down for 3 hours on Sunday

  64. 16/09 17:35

    AP: Greece's courts require workers and users vaccinated or not COVID-19 infected

  65. 16/09 16:57

    EUmed 9 summit being held at SNFCC in Greek capital of Athens on Friday

  66. 16/09 16:26

    Irish airline Ryanair planning to create 5,000 jobs over the next five years

  67. 16/09 15:10

    Passione Rossa Ferrari Club road show at Piraeus port for 'Days of the Sea' festival

  68. 16/09 13:15

    Gordon, Gino & Fred Go Greek kicks off on ITV channel on September 27

  69. 16/09 11:05

    Cyprus Deputy Minister sees prospects for Saudi tourists through Bahrain

  70. 16/09 10:49

    Minister estimates that €6 bln will be chanelled to IT and telecoms projects in Greece

  71. 15/09 14:49

    COVID-19 pandemic expected to infect 50,000 children aged 12-18 in Greece in Autumn

  72. 15/09 14:47

    UNWTO members plan coordinated restart of sector in Asia and the Pacific

  73. 15/09 13:30

    Greek Finance Minister leaves open possibility of further favourable interventions

  74. 15/09 12:03

    Greek government takes balanced measures to protect the health and the rights of citizens

  75. 15/09 09:33

    Hellenic Development Bank and Federation of Industries of Greece sign joint actions memo

  76. 14/09 18:58

    AP: 80% of adult population vaccinated with at least one dose in Cyprus

  77. 14/09 15:23

    Education Minister: Health protocols in Greek schools will change

  78. 14/09 14:22

    IATA Regional Vice President in Asia-Pacific

  79. 13/09 21:52

    14th Animasyros 2021 International Animation Festival starts on September 22

  80. 12/09 14:32

    Greece puts squeeze on unvaccinated citizens barring them from indoor spots

  81. 12/09 12:36

    Greek Foreign Ministry expresses solidarity to U.S.A. on 20th anniversary of 9-11 attacks

  82. 11/09 16:27

    Athens Half Marathon race to be dedicated to late composer Mikis Theodorakis

  83. 11/09 16:20

    UNWTO: Innovation and partnerships to make wine tourism driver rural development

  84. 11/09 16:11

    Modified covid test requirements for domestic travel in Greece on Monday, September 13

  85. 09/09 22:37

    Minister: Coronavirus vaccination centers coming to Greek universities

  86. 09/09 21:59

    Greek PM: EKO Acropolis Rally 2021 'Rally of Gods' is 'here to stay'

  87. 09/09 20:29

    1 in 4 high school students in Greece have received at least one dose of Covid-19 vaccine

  88. 09/09 19:50

    Greece records 2,170 new covid-19 infections and 43 fatalities on Thursday

  89. 09/09 14:54

    Minister: Larnaca Port and Marina project the largest project ever in Cyprus

  90. 08/09 19:41

    Greece will launch COVID-19 vaccination campaign to 12-17 year-olds

  91. 08/09 19:30

    Statement concerning Celestyal Cruises sale of The Experience published

  92. 08/09 16:36

    Greek weather service warns of heavy rain and storms

  93. 08/09 15:25

    Education Minister outlines protocol for schooling system in Greece

  94. 08/09 11:45

    Free self-tests available to all school students in Greece as of Wednesday

  95. 07/09 18:08

    Greece records 2,807 new COVID-19 cases and 38 fatalities on Tuesday

  96. 07/09 16:32

    AP: Vulnerable Greeks and over-60’s to get COVID-19 booster shots

  97. 07/09 16:04

    Roads temporarily closed in downtown Athens due to EKO Acropolis Rally

  98. 07/09 14:24

    Tourism Minister: Greece will continue to receive USA visitors until end of the season

  99. 07/09 14:11

    ELSTAT: Greek economy grew 16.2% in Q2

  100. 06/09 20:05

    AP: Greece starts administering COVID-19 vaccines outside churches