Russia’s brutal invasion of Ukraine has started another major international crisis, bringing further uncertainty, volatility and human misery to a world just starting to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic.
Alongside the heart-breaking scenes of suffering and destruction, Putin’s war and the resulting sanctions against Russia bring a new set of headaches for the air logistics sector, which has so brilliantly adapted and adjusted to the extreme challenges of the pandemic.
The resilience developed in the last two years may prove useful in tackling the fresh waves of capacity losses, changes and volatility, freight rate rises, longer flight times, plus an enormous spike in fuel costs, alongside dramatic changes in trade patterns, freight flows and business relationships. There’s set to be more losers than winners, and companies hit include Russian and international carriers and their partners. ABC, for example, is now unable to serve its primary Asia-Europe markets, and may soon struggle to source parts for its aircraft, while some other Russian airlines will see their aircraft leases terminated or have difficulty with international payments. Other unintended consequences include interruptions to supply chains dependent on Russian or Ukrainian products, withdrawal of companies and services from Russia – including freight and logistics – plus price rises in many commodities and products from food to wood.
The changes will see Russia and Russian businesses more or less excluded from most freight trade with Europe, the US and the democratic western alliance, along with the strengthening of Russia-China trade and relations. And if the conflict escalates or spreads further, then we will face unprecedented, unknown, and unimaginable further consequences.
The Ukraine crisis comes as the air freight sector has been making progress in a number of areas, not least in digitalisation initiatives already delivering productivity improvements and promising further gains – including from the digitalisation of payments (see page 18). And as highlighted on page 12, as more processes and functions are digitalised, integrating modules and systems is becoming ever easier thanks to APIs and the retreat of legacy systems – laying the foundation for new efficiencies through AI.
This year’s Outlook report includes some fascinating insights from selected senior leaders within 15 leading air freight organisations, even if the contributions came before the Russian invasion of Ukraine. One contribution reflects on the need for the air freight sector to rethink performance from both an economic and human perspective, giving more attention to factors such as well-being, commitment, and social value (page 61).
Similarly, tragedies like the war in Ukraine and other conflicts and disasters remind us that while business is important and valuable, nothing is as crucial as peace, health and respectful relationships with our neighbours – including those that hold different views.
Featured in this issue
A new level
Dnata’s plans this year include launching a next-generation e-commerce platform that takes its existing community platform to a new level, offering a highly integrated trading platform and significa...Read More
A volatile business
Frankfurt Airport’s latest efforts to make cargo handling processes more efficient include the launch of the ‘FRA-OS’ data exchange platform for inbound processes, highlights Pierre Dominique Pr...Read More
Air freight’s clear mission
Kuehne + Nagel’s global head of air logistics operations, Thomas Puglisi, believes more-available and more-accurate information and a culture of proactive communication can help the sector predict p...Read More
An answer to the industry’s challenges
Despite historic arguments about who benefits from new tech and therefore who should pay for it, the reality is that we all benefit from stronger, digital supply chains, as well as greater efficiency ...Read More
An improving picture within African air freight
Beyond the obvious challenges presented by Covid-19, long-term issues of inadequate cargo handling space and infrastructure persist within the region, although various operators and some national gove...Read More
Carrier case study: IAG Cargo
IAG Cargo offers capacity on over 40 flights a week to and from Africa, flying directly to Accra, Lagos, Abuja, Cairo, Nairobi, Cape Town, Johannesburg and Mauritius from London-Heathrow and Dakar fro...Read More
Covid’s double-edged sword
Much needed digitisation and automation will continue to be implemented, but we should not forget the importance of skilled personnel, where the shortage of labour will boost automation even further b...Read More
Exploring artificial intelligence
Dirk Goovaerts, global cargo chair and head of Middle East & Africa at Swissport International, expects Swissport’s recent partnership with logistics technology provider Speedcargo to help impro...Read More
Fast cargo release: Reaping the rewards of digitalising payments
Developments in the solutions available offer stakeholders the opportunity to improve the speed, efficiency, transparency, simplicity, accuracy and costs not just of payments but of cargo release and ...Read More
Further expanding the charter network
DSV’s own-controlled capacity, focused on freighter-friendly airports, has developed significantly in the last 18 months and has been ‘a gamechanger, under these extraordinary and uncertain market...Read More
Innovations in motion
Digital pre-notification has become the new standard for all ground handlers at Amsterdam Airport Schiphol, with ‘automated nomination’ set to roll out this year – where import shipments will au...Read More
Outlook 2022 Report: Introduction
As in previous years, CAAS asked a small number of selected people and organisations involved in the international air freight sector to contribute to the ‘Outlook 2022’ report, reflecting on the ...Read More
Partner power: Building the benefits of collaboration
Industry alliances and collaborations were a true success story during the pandemic and will continue to drive the industry forward and produce even greater success in 2022, says Martin Drew, senior v...Read More
Partnership between suppliers
One of the most important areas where tech companies are starting to deliver value is through collaboration with other providers, says Yuval Baruch, CEO of Hermes Logistics Technologies What have y...Read More
Pharma logistics specialists pass Covid tests
Air freight suppliers have risen to meet the demanding conditions of the global vaccine rollout, amid a highly challenging environment that has included capacity and staff shortages and volatility, ch...Read More
Power of the community
Plans to build on the growing success of air cargo community systems include use of Blockchain, AI, Internet of Things, Big Data, and robotic integration, outlines Vineet Malhotra, director of Kale Lo...Read More
Supporting a collaborative approach
The air cargo industry is beginning to see the benefits of community collaboration, and Changi Airport plans to introduce further community-based applications to unlock efficiency and productivity gai...Read More
The Augmented GSA
The air freight sector needs to rethink performance from both an economic and human perspective, giving more attention to factors such as well-being, commitment, and social value, believes Adrien Thom...Read More
The building momentum of digitalisation
More and more air cargo processes and functions are being digitalised, and the integration of modules and systems is becoming ever easier – thanks to the ubiquity of APIs and the inevitable retreat ...Read More
The open, innovative, collaborative approach
Agility and flexibility are key to 2022 and further recovery, says David Linford, director for global sales and account management at CHAMP While the pandemic is still a part of our lives, the vacc...Read More
Work in progress
American Airlines Cargo’s aims this year include identifying operational challenges at the source and learning how to implement proactive preventative measures to mitigate issues – and evaluating ...Read More