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The Air Cargo Market in 2024 and how E-Commerce plays a factor

Updated: May 10

The Air Cargo Market in 2024 and how E-Commerce plays a factor

The Air Cargo Market in 2024 and how E-Commerce plays a factor

As we step into 2024, the air cargo market finds itself at a pivotal juncture, with uncertainties lingering amidst signs of stabilization. While the rapid decline in volumes witnessed last year has tapered off in recent months, the road ahead remains clouded with challenges and opportunities.

Potential Return to Seasonality

Experts anticipate a return to classic seasonality in 2024, albeit in a subdued manner. Niall van de Wouw, Chief Airfreight Officer at Xeneta’s Clive Data Services, suggests that the year ahead could offer a respite for shippers after the tumultuous period of volatility.

Impact of E-Commerce Giants

However, the air cargo industry faces new challenges, particularly concerning capacity and the influence of e-commerce behemoths such as Shein, Temu, and Tik-Tok. Marc Schlossberg, EVP of Air Freight at forwarder Unique Logistics, highlights the voracious appetite for capacity exhibited by these players, which has the potential to sideline traditional air freight shippers. During peak demand periods, e-commerce giants have been absorbing a significant portion of global capacity, placing additional strain on the industry. With e-commerce projected to grow by 20% to 30%, the dominance of these companies in the air cargo space is expected to strengthen further.

Intersection of High-Tech and E-Commerce

Moreover, the convergence of a resurgent high-tech market with the rising influence of e-commerce giants presents a potential collision course. As consumers look to update their tech equipment, spurred by advancements and upgrades made during the pandemic, the demand for air cargo services may witness a surge. However, this collision of markets could also lead to challenges, with potential disruptions and bottlenecks arising as demand outstrips supply. Schlossberg cautions that if not managed effectively, this intersection could result in turbulent times for the air cargo industry.

While the air cargo market may be experiencing a period of relative calm, the underlying currents of change and disruption remain ever-present. Shippers and stakeholders must remain vigilant, adapting to evolving market dynamics and positioning themselves strategically to navigate the challenges and capitalize on emerging opportunities in the year ahead.

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