May 2021 International Market Update
An update from Sunset’s International Team
- Most trade lanes showing strong growth in the last three months
- Transpacific Eastbound grew by 23% while the Transatlantic Westbound grew by 11%
- North American and Asia Pacific imports drive the strong recovery of global container trade.
- Transpacific reached all time high levels in container trade since August 2020.
- Demand for face masks remains strong as 115,000 additional TEU versus last year we imported over the last three months. China, Vietnam, and India driver demand for semi-manufactured goods.
- Demand and Capacity have strong growth rates since September 2020.
- Container Trade recovery continues its upward trajectory.
- After strong declines in 2020, air cargo demand completed its recovery to 2019 levels in January 2021. With available capacity still lagging, air cargo load factors have greatly increased.
- The air cargo demand supply imbalance has pushed load factors and yields to historically high levels. Load factors have increased 20% since the beginning of the pandemic.
- Automotive, high tech, and chemicals led demand recovery in the last quarter, while fashion goods and temp controlled goods struggled.
- The COVID-19 pandemic made the USA more dependent on China than ever before. High tech from China accounted for 12% of all USA air imports in Q2 and Q4 2020.
- China’s recovery is not limited to air exports. Air imports have also seen a strong growth in the last months.
- Air cargo capacity is still down 7% in Q1 2021
- The Transpacific and Asia to Europe were the only trade lanes showing positive capacity growth rates in Q1 2021.
- Freighters continue to drive global capacity recovery. While belly cargo capacity recovers slowly, it is still 47% below pre-COVID levels.
- Many widebody passenger aircraft orders have been deferred while freight orders have increased YOY
- Double digit PMI growth has not been recorded for almost 10 years and hints at strong air freight demand in the coming months.
Source: JAS Forwarding
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