The latest phase in the recovery from Covid, bringing the return of significant levels of passenger air services and cargo bellyhold capacity, is positive news in most respects. But it comes with additional complications, and airports and their cargo stakeholders have been juggling numerous challenges, including handling staff shortages, as highlighted in the Europe report on pages 20-29.
For cargo-specialist airports, a lowered requirement for freighters has led to a slowdown of growth, although the renewed focus of big metro airports on passenger services has reminded freighter operators of the benefits of cargo-focused gateways.
The return of passenger air services has particular implications for Schiphol and its cargo community, and Schiphol has also been responding to a further lowering of annual flight movement limits and restrictions to its cargo footprint to make way for expanded taxiways. Its solutions are based around more efficient processes and use of space, driven by digitalisation and collaboration, as highlighted on pages 30-36.
Carriers also continue to push forward with initiatives to build and better use their capacity, networks and infrastructure. For Emirates, this includes new investments in freighters, expanded partnerships, plus further digitalisation initiatives. New potential opportunities emerging include more direct relationships with shipper customers and the provision of wider end-to-end services, highlights SVP for cargo Nabil Sultan (pages 10-14).
Meanwhile, Russia’s brutal and barbaric assault on Ukraine since February continues to have major implications for air freight, not least on the air cargo charter market (see pages 16-19), where it has reduced aircraft availability and weakened economic growth, but also triggered humanitarian demand and led to renewed investment from energy companies generating big project movements. Charter demand has softened in consumer-focused verticals such as e-commerce, although it remains strong for verticals such as automotive, pharmaceutical and healthcare, government and humanitarian.
During the pandemic, many forwarders and their clients put in place long-term air cargo charter programmes to secure supply chains. That seems set to reverse, although with business travel still not returning to pre-Covid levels, demand for freighters to support supply chains continues on key lanes.
Elsewhere, the 2022 Air Cargo Handling & Logistics (ACHL) conference and exhibition was back to a real-world gathering for the first time in three years, with more than 400 delegates making it the busiest ACHL ever (see pages 44-47). Although digitalisation, infrastructure and standards were major and recurring themes, the topic most frequently highlighted was the need to attract, recruit, train and retain new, young and diverse talent within the sector (see pages 48-55). That looks set to be an ever-more important theme for the sector – and for this publication.
Featured in this issue
ACHL conference returns with record attendees
Air Cargo Handling & Logistics 2022 in Athens was so successful that the organisers and their partners have decided to run the event again in Athens in 2023 The 2022 Air Cargo Handling & Lo...Read More
Aeroterm selects Lödige for JFK modernisation project
Aeroterm, North America’s largest third-party on-airport developer, has selected cargo terminal solutions specialist Lödige Industries to install a state-of-the-art automated cargo system at John F...Read More
AfA calls for urgent investment in US airport cargo operations
The Airforwarders Association (AfA) and the National Customs Brokers and Forwarders Association of America (NCBFAA) are calling for a State or Federal-backed ‘Air Cargo Support Fund’ to tackle the...Read More
BUD Cargo City to expand capacity to 300,000 tonnes
Budapest Airport’s Cargo City is set for another significant expansion following dynamic cargo growth and development at the Hungarian gateway since the airport’s new-generation cargo infrastructu...Read More
Building predictable cargo processes
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Connecting with the customer
Nabil Sultan, senior vice president for cargo at Emirates, talks to Will Waters about some of the new opportunities emerging thanks to continuing expansion of e-commerce and digitalisation – includi...Read More
Creating a connected cargo ecosystem
Yuval Baruch, CEO of Hermes Logistics Technologies, talks to Will Waters about partnering with other best-of-breed third-party technology providers to offer customers a fully integrated solution from ...Read More
Dronamics and Cranfield to develop hydrogen-fuel technology for cargo drones
Aerospace technology pioneers combine their expertise to integrate hydrogen fuel-cell technology into the Black Swan, the long-range cargo drone being developed by Dronamics Cargo drone developer a...Read More
Jan de Rijk Logistics and Air France KLM introduce new LHV
Use of a Long Heavy Vehicle for RFS operations, running on BioFuel, marks ‘an important step towards more sustainable goods transport’ Air France KLM Martinair Cargo (AFKLMP Cargo) and Jan de R...Read More
Keeping all the balls in the air
As air capacity in Europe returns towards pre-Covid levels, airports and their cargo stakeholders are juggling numerous challenges as they adapt to shifting demands and expectations, reports Megan Ram...Read More
New purpose-built Pharma Handling Centre at Cathay Pacific Cargo Terminal
Hong Kong air cargo handler Cathay Pacific Services Ltd (CPSL) has opened a fully temperature-controlled area of over 1,250 square metres dedicated to the handling of pharmaceutical products at the Ca...Read More
Recruiting, training, and retaining staff
Air cargo employers need to adapt their approaches in response to a personnel landscape that has changed quite radically over the past two and a half years, according to panellists and other contribut...Read More
Sabrewing cargo drone breaks world record on first flight
US cargo drone developer Sabrewing Aircraft Company has completed the first hover flight of its RH-1-A ‘Rhaegal’ vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) air cargo drone, while lifting a record-setting...Read More
SATS agrees funding and outlines synergies for WFS takeover
Benefits of ‘transformational’ deal to create the world’s largest air cargo handler include accelerated cargo automation, cross-selling, network expansion, deeper e-commerce cargo partnerships, ...Read More
Ups and downs in the air cargo charter market
Neil Dursley, group CCO of Chapman Freeborn Airchartering, talks to CAAS about another volatile and changing year for charter brokers and their customers How would you describe the dynamics and cha...Read More