ACI World on airports as enablers

ACI World on airports as enablers

Michael Rossell, Deputy Director General, External Affairs, Airports Council International (ACI) World reports on ACI’s collaboration with TIACA which aims to improve efficiency in the air cargo supply chain.

Michael Rossell, Deputy Director General, External Affairs, Airports Council International (ACI) World

The world’s airports are a vital link in the air cargo supply chain and are key enablers for the sustainable growth of global commerce.

Working with TIACA means that we can collaborate to help our member airports accommodate the demands on their capacity.

To this end, TIACA and Airports Council International (ACI) World work together at global events to promote this collaboration and increased efficiency in the air cargo supply chain.

In June this year, at the 28th ACI Europe/World Annual General Assembly, ACI and TIACA came together in a unique forum to address important matters, including the impact of e-commerce and IT-driven technologies on air cargo, the latest regulatory and infrastructural challenges, and new global trade developments affecting our industries.

We will continue these discussions in Toronto during TIACA’s Air Cargo Forum, a biennial event that brings together thousands of airfreight decision-makers and supply chain operators from across the globe.

ACI will participate in a session on the current situation and the evolution of the air cargo industry, and I am delighted to have been invited to join this panel.

The ACI World Airport Traffic Report, (released September 17), will inform our views on this panel, where we will be able to share the global emerging trends in the sector for 2017.

Globally, airports handled almost 120 million tonnes of cargo in 2017 as a result of a record-breaking traffic jump of7.7% compared with 2016.

This rapid rise in volumes is largely fuelled by strengthening global trade and the US economy.

Despite the uncertainty regarding the threat of trade wars and the growth of protectionist sentiments across the world, business confidence remained strong worldwide and export orders increased in2017.

In the US and UK, two of the world’s largest aviation markets, business confidence persevered throughout 2017.

All regions posted robust growth in cargo volumes.

International trade and industrial production continued to make gains as a result of the cyclical recovery in the global economy, which translated into growth in air cargo volumes.

Inventory build-ups, augmented export orders and a strengthening of consumer demand—reflected in increased online purchases—are also important drivers in the near term.

Lastly, as a result of maritime industry consolidations and bankruptcies, a temporary substitution of ocean cargo by air cargo in 2016 and2017 also helped to boost air cargo volumes in the short term.

In this age of disruptive technologies and innovation, aviation partners must continue to work together to make the best possible use of existing infrastructure and where necessary to invest in new infrastructure in the most effective way.

With a focus that lies largely on passengers, it is essential that cargo is not forgotten, and indeed that it can benefit from emerging technologies, methodologies, and practices to deliver greater customer satisfaction.

The key to strengthening the air cargo industry is to ensure that each partner recognises their role and works together to enhance connectivity.

For more information on attending or exhibiting at the Air Cargo Forum in Toronto, Canada from 16th to 18th October 2018, visit or contact Warren Jones at, or Kenneth Gibson at, or call +1 (786) 265 7011.

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