Category Archives: Aviation

DEL-BOM expressway to connect 8 MMLPs, airports, ports

Nitin Gadkari, Minister of Road Transport and Highways announced the opening of India’s largest Delhi to Mumbai Expressway with a length of 1,386 km to improve the connectivity betwee India’s National Capital Delhi and Fiancial Capital Mumbai. The minister said in a Linkedin post, “We are constructing the world’s fastest developed expressway which provides connectivity to 93 NMP Nodes, 8 MMLPs, greenfield airports (Jewar and Navi Mumbai) and port (JNPT). The 8-lane access controlled greenfield expressway would be built with alignment optimization to reduce to travel time to 12 hours from 24 hours. With a 180 km distance reduction (1424 km to 1242 km) it has scope for future expansion to the 12-lane epressway.”

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Lufthansa Cargo offers temperature tracking for perishables

Lufthansa Cargo has launched a new service that provides real-time tracking of the location and temperature of perishable products. The new service is launched in cooperation with Sensitech and Lobster Logistics Cloud and utilises sensors and GPS technology to monitor the location and ambient temperature of fresh produce during air and land transport. “This increases the safety of the goods, reduces the risk of losses and [therefore] makes fresh produce logistics more sustainable,” Lufthansa Cargo said. The airline’s head of airmail, courier & perishable handling, Oliver Blum, said: “We are all the more pleased that we have been able to develop another technical innovation in fresh produce logistics together with our partners Sensitech and Lobster Logistics Cloud. “This is a showcase example of how important it is to put our heads together to achieve climate and environmental goals.” The temperature loggers and Logistics Cloud’s tracking platform enable notifications in real-time, for example when specified parameters for temperature and humidity are reached. Andreas Tittel, strategic account manager at Sensitech, said that the real-time notifications allow customers to identify issues at an early stage and act accordingly.

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‘Increased repo rate can lead to high costs, lower profits, competitiveness”

Reacting on increased repo rate and how it will impact the logistics trade, C K Govil. Vice President, ACAAI shares, “An increase in the repo rate in India can have a significant impact on the logistics industry. This is because the logistics industry heavily relies on borrowing to fund its operations and investments in infrastructure. An increase in the repo rate means higher interest rates on loans, which can increase the cost of borrowing for logistics companies. This can lead to higher operating costs, lower profit margins, and decreased competitiveness for the industry. Moreover, higher interest rates can also affect consumer spending and reduce demand for goods, leading to a decrease in the volume of goods being transported. This can result in a slowdown in the demand for logistics services, putting pressure on companies to find ways to reduce costs and remain profitable. Overall, an increase in the repo rate can have a negative impact on the logistics industry in India, leading to higher costs and decreased demand for logistics services.”

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Air freight rates decline but above pre-COVID levels

Airfreight rates continued their downward spiral in January but are still above pre-Covid levels, according to the latest statistics from the Baltic Exchange Airfreight Index (BAI). It shows that average rates – both contract and spot – paid by forwarders on services from Hong Kong to North America in January declined to $6.14 per kg compared with $6.50 per kg in December and $10.90 per kg a year ago. However, rates on the trade are still 67.8% above the $3.66 per kg registered in January 2019 (pre-Covid). It was a similar story in services from Hong Kong to Europe where prices fell to $4.96 per kg from $5.52 per kg in December and $6.61 per kg a year ago. On this trade, rates stood at $2.83 per kg in January 2019. Rates are supported by higher fuel prices, the lack of belly hold capacity on certain trades and ongoing expensive charter/BSA operations signed at the height of the pandemic. On capacity, figures from Boeing presented at the recent World Cargo Summit show that overall capacity in November was only around 3% behind 2019 levels, but belly capacity was 23% down, with the difference made up by a 16% increase in dedicated freighters.

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BLR records highest cargo tonnage in FY 2022

The Kempegowda International Airport, Bengaluru (BLR Airport) recorded its highest-ever cargo tonnage in Financial Year (FY) 2022, despite challenging circumstances due to multiple Covid waves. BLR Airport processed an all-time high tonnage for a fiscal year since Airport Opening Day (AOD) of 411,513 Metric Tonnes (MT) of cargo, recording a growth of 26% as against 326,643MT in FY 2021. International cargo recorded a 31.1% growth, 271,988MT processed, as compared to 207,518 MT in FY 2021. Domestic cargo grew at 17%, with 139,525MT versus 119,125MT in FY 2021. Perishable cargo has been one of the major growth drivers for BLR Airport. It is the No.1 airport in the country for handling perishables — estimated to account for 31% of India’s total perishable shipments. BLR Airport processed 39,518 MT of cargo in October 2021 — the highest ever for a month since AOD. International cargo processed (both imports and exports) was also the highest ever in October 2021, accounting for 25,695 MT. The Airport achieved a significant record by gaining 13% of India’s air cargo market share and 45% of South India’s air cargo market share. With this achievement, BLR Airport has become the only major airport in the country to show growth over pre-pandemic levels.

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Everts Air Cargo expands fleet, converts MD-88SF

Everts Air Cargo is expanding its fleet with the conversion of an MD-88SF into a freighter configuration through Aeronautical Engineers, Inc. (AEI). The aircraft will commence conversion in March 2023 with modification touch labor being performed by Dothan, Alabama-based, Commercial Jet, which is an authorised AEI Conversion Center. Everts will use the freighter to accommodate fleet expansion plans. The AEI MD-88SF is capable of carrying 12 88” x 108” Containers/Pallets. Everts Air Cargo is the sister company to Everts Air Alaska and serves customers residing in larger Alaskan cities, as well as, small villages in remote locations. The company’s primary business is transporting freight and mail, as well as the movement of oversized freight, hazardous materials and small packages. The company’s fleet consists of C-46 and DC-6 aircraft, which are well-suited to the many shorter, unimproved gravel or ice runways in Alaska, along with DC-9s, and MD-80s.

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Air cargo sees 8% dip in 2022, goes close to pre-COVID levels

IATA released data for global air freight markets showing that 2022 full-year demand for air cargo took a significant step back from 2021 levels but was close to 2019 performance. Global full-year demand in 2022, measured in cargo tonne-kilometers (CTKs*), was down 8.0% compared with 2021 (-8.2% for international operations). Compared with 2019, it was down 1.6% (both global and international). Capacity in 2022, measured in available cargo tonne-kilometers (ACTKs), was 3.0% above 2021 (+4.5% for international operations). Compared with 2019 (pre-COVID) levels, capacity declined 8.2% (-9.0% for international operations). December saw a softening in performance: global demand was 15.3% below 2021 levels (-15.8% for international operations). Monthly cargo demand tracked below 2021 levels from March 2022. Global capacity was 2.2% below 2021 levels (‑0.5% for international operations). This was the tenth consecutive monthly contraction compared with 2021 performance. 2022 ended with mixed signals:​ Global new export orders, a leading indicator of cargo demand, have stayed at the same level since October 2022. For major economies, new export orders are shrinking except in Germany, the United States, and Japan, where they grew. Global goods trade decreased 1.5% in November, down from a 3.4% increase in October. The Consumer Price Index for G7 countries indicated inflation tracking at 6.8% for December. The 0.6 percentage point drop compared with November (7.4%) was the largest over the course of year. Inflation in producer (input) prices reduced to 12.7% in October, its lowest level so far in 2022. “In the face of significant political and economic uncertainties, air cargo performance declined compared with the extraordinary levels of 2021. That brought air cargo demand to1.6% below 2019 (pre-pandemic) levels. The continuing measures by key governments …

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Amzon scales back cargo flying as demand cools

The e-commerce giant, Amazon is scaling back on flights this year, citing lower demand and slower economic growth. Air Transport Services Group, which runs a significant portion of Amazon’s air cargo fleet, said it expects to operate Boeing 767 freighters dedicated to servicing Amazon and DHL at reduced schedules and less flight time per aircraft. “Both companies are adjusting their ground and air distribution and fulfillment networks in the United States to conform to reduced U.S. economic growth and consumer spending levels in the first half of 2023,” ATSG said. Air cargo rates, which surged in recent years due to port congestion and high demand for fast deliveries, have slumped. The Baltic Air Freight Index was down more than 33% on Jan. 30 from a year earlier. The International Air Transport Association said last month that air cargo demand in November was down nearly 14% from the year-ago period, while capacity fell 1.9%. Meanwhile, passenger airlines have said travel demand has held up as consumers prioritize trips and other experiences. But coming off Amazon’s weakest year for growth in its quarter century as a public company, CEO Andy Jassy has taken steps to curtail expenses. That includes cutting more than 18,000 jobs, pausing warehouse expansion and shuttering some projects.

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New Goa Airport’s cargo ops go digital with Kale Logistics Solutions

Kale Logistics Solutions (Kale) has gone live with its state-of-the-art cargo management system, GALAXY, at GMR Goa Air Cargo (GGAC), completing implementation of 100 percent digital domestic cargo operations at the new Goa airport. Kale’s web-based solution, GALAXY, is enabling end-to-end digital processing for all domestic outbound cargo at GGAC, from acceptance to loading and departure, as well as for domestic inbound cargo from flight arrival and flight check through to cargo delivery at the warehouse. GMR Goa International Airport Limited (GGIAL), a subsidiary of GMR Airports Limited (GAL), was inaugurated in December 2022 by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, and the domestic air cargo operations went live from an interim facility at the airport with Kale’s solution in January. “GMR Goa Air Cargo has set a new record, going digital from the start button,” said Vineet Malhotra, Co-Founder and Director, Kale Logistics Solutions. “Our longstanding strategic partnership with GMR Cargo and deep understanding of their business, challenges, and market dynamics positions Kale well to help them meet higher customer expectations. “Supported by our fully digital solution, we are confident that GGAC will exceed its cargo handling estimates, and look forward to supporting its commitment to sustainable operations.” The GALAXY cargo management system is used by several hub airports and cargo terminals all over the world and is currently operating at more than 100 air cargo stations globally. The solution also covers processing for transshipment and direct delivery, as well as for inbound and outbound cargo. The newly launched Goa International Airport looks to become a hub for cargo movement alongside Mumbai and Bengaluru in Western India.

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‘New airports & aerodromes will expedite regional connectivity’

Debajyoti Bagchi, VP, Trucking and Air Cargo Charters, TT Aviation Handling Services Pvt Ltd. said, “The ‘Bright Star’ 2023 budget of the world’s 5th largest economy reveals people centric agenda and facilitate sustainable economic development. It’s a progressive thought process of new India that has aimed at artificial intelligence, MSMEs as a growth engine, women empowerment, digitization, and most importantly Indian start ups which is the 3rd largest ecosystem globally. The vision of 50 additional airports & aerodromes will expedite the abundance of regional connectivity including passenger and cargo. In addition to that, the prioritization of 100 identified critical transport projects will be a crucial factor for NLP deliverables. Revision of the income slabs in the proposed income tax regime will allow some definite breather for people. However, the budget doesn’t mull anything on the lowering of the fuel/LPG prices to reduce overall inflation.

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