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Major changes in air cargo freighter market driven by e-commerce, reports consultancy

According to the consultancy, this 20-year Freighter Forecast for 2017 contains enhancements to those first unveiled in 2016. By Patrick Burnson

A new forecast and independent assessment of freighter demand has been released by the air cargo consultancy ACMG.

According to the consultancy, this 20-year Freighter Forecast for 2017 contains enhancements to those first unveiled in 2016.

“The robust activity in freighter conversion of narrow body types over the past four years has led to an increase in the quantity of narrow body freighters in the global fleet,” said Robert V. Dahl, managing director, ACMG. “This increase reverses a trend that began in 2000 through which the narrow body freighter fleet decreased about 40% over a decade-long period.”

The report includes ACMG’s prediction for the freighter fleet make-up in 2036 by aircraft type, taking into account the assessment of new-build freighter production, passenger-to-freighter (P-to-F) conversion activity, and the retirement of freighters from the existing freighter fleet.

“Much of the good news on the freighter market today is coming from the narrow body sector,” said Dahl. “Will that continue? We are now in the fourth year of a narrow body revolution, and with e-commerce continuing to fundamentally alter global retail consumption, narrow bodies will continue to be the big story in airfreight.”

The aviation consultancy expects demand for freighter aircraft to continue trending higher, albeit not at the same rate as before the Great Recession.

Charles (Chuck) Clowdis, managing director of transportation advisory services for IHS Global Insight, told LM in an interview that e-commerce by its nature is the best thing to happen in reviving the narrow bodied freighter. 

"I've been saying for over a year that this trend has been a real boon to both conversions and new orders as well," he said. 



About the author
Patrick Burnson, Executive Editor
Patrick Burnson is executive editor for Logistics Management and Supply Chain Management Review magazines and web sites. Patrick is a widely-published writer and editor who has spent most of his career covering international trade, global logistics, and supply chain management. He lives and works in San Francisco, providing readers with a Pacific Rim perspective on industry trends and forecasts. You can reach him directly at [email protected]

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