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Air cargo rates out of China are high and climbing, say analysts


ASIA air freight rates are high and climbing higher as the Covid lockdowns reduce capacity rising demand causes rates to skyrocket, reports New York's FreightWaves.

Shippers should prepare to pay much more for air freight, especially on popular shipping routes from Asia, based on the latest data and forecasts.

After a three-week lull, prices for air exports from China have turned noticeably upward, a trend most international trade professionals expect will continue through the end of the year.

Outbound spot rates from China to Europe and the US increased in the last week of August, highlighted by a 10.8 per cent increase in the Shanghai-Europe market and an 18.4 per cent rate hike for Shanghai to the US according to data compiled by The Air Freight Index Co (TAC).

With capacity leaving China about 19 per cent less than last year, air cargo rates are about 25 per cent to Europe and 35 per cent higher on the transpacific.

Logistics providers say air freight demand is even greater in other parts of Southeast Asia, with export at US$2/kilogramme above that in China.

Transatlantic rates have softened, especially on eastbound flights.

Postal logistics is also important for economic recovery, officials said.

The US House of Representatives recently approved $25 billion to help the US Postal Service deal with higher operating costs associated with the Covid crisis, and ensure timely delivery of mail-in ballots. The bill is unlikely to be taken up by the Republican-controlled Senate.

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