Air cargo update: Flying off the shelves

Air cargo is bigger business than ever. What does this mean for the market, and how are digitalisation and sustainability affecting the sector?

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Cargo contributed a third of global airline revenues in 2020, according to IATA
DB Schenker

Significant growth in the global logistics market has occurred since early 2020, thanks to the urgent requirement to move medical supplies to cope with the COVID- 19 pandemic, and surging e-commerce demand as consumer shopping habits changed rapidly.

Henk Mulder, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) head of digital cargo, observed during a June 2021 webinar that air cargo experienced the equivalent of three years’ growth in a single year (2020/21).

The greater demand increased pressure on the major shipping companies moving goods worldwide. As IATA noted in its September 2021 air cargo market update: “Strong demand for goods, combined with COVID-19 control measures, has disrupted production at manufacturers.”

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