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Airfreight rates on key lanes in Asia continue gradual descent in September

Airfreight rates on key trade lanes out of Asia continued to weaken in September despite the industry heading towards the peak season. The latest figures from the Baltic Exchange Airfreight Index (BAI) show that in September rates from Hong Kong to North America declined by 18.5% compared with a year ago to $7.94 per kg and are also down on the $8.33 per kg achieved in August. The falls come as bellyhold capacity continues to return to the Hong Kong market as Covid restrictions are eased and the air cargo outlook remains cloudy. In its latest market wrap-up, TAC Index said: “Normally at this time of year, prices tend to firm up ahead of the peak season. But this year – against a backdrop of high commodity prices, rising interest rates, full inventories, and prospects of stagflation – the reverse seems to be happening.” It should of course be noted that prices on both lanes remain far above pre-Covid levels.

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