HONG KONG International Airport emerged as the top airport for air freight last year, with volumes up 6.1 per cent year on year to 4.3 million tonnes, according to preliminary figures from Airports Council International (ACI).
A breakdown of the results by region shows that Middle Eastern airports lead the growth with volumes rising 11.8 per cent in 2014. Dubai handled 2.4 tonnes of cargo, but that represented a decline of 3.1 per cent on-year, reported Atlanta area Air Cargo World.
Dubai World Central (DWC) has experienced growth of 262.5 per cent since it began operations in 2014. Doha and Abu Dhabi, ranked second and third in freight volume for the region, reported gains of 13.2 per cent and 12.8 per cent last year, respectively.
Growth in the Asia Pacific air freight market was also strong, with a 5.7 per cent rise overall. After Hong Kong, Shanghai was the region's second most frequented air freight hub, with an 8.6 increase over 2013, followed by Incheon, with 3.3 per cent growth.
Tokyo saw growth of 14.7 per cent, which put the airport at one million tonnes of freight in 2014.
The African air cargo market grew by 3.8 per cent. Cairo's volumes grew by eight per cent, making it the top airport in Africa in terms of air freight. However, Johannesburg dropped by 6.4 per cent in total volume, due to the lack of growth on the continent.
The report states that Europe appears to be in recovery, with air freight growth at 3.6 per cent in 2014. Istanbul and Amsterdam posted the strongest growth rates among Europe's top hubs at 6.7 per cent and 11.6 per cent, respectively.
Frankfurt and Paris, Europe's busiest hubs, increased volumes by 1.8 per cent and 0.8 per cent.
Latin America and Caribbean results were flat due to weakness in the Brazilian and Argentine markets. Brazilian airports saw cargo volumes slip by 1.4 per cent.
On the other hand, Mexico gained by five per cent in freight volume. Guarulhos airport in Sao Paulo and Mexico City were the busiest, posting gains of 4.2 per cent and 5.4 per cent.
Growth in North America cargo volume followed lower unemployment and inflation levels. Overall air freight volumes were up 3.5 per cent. Memphis, home to FedEx, and Louisville, UPS, increased 2.8 per cent and 3.5 per cent, respectively. Chicago O'Hare was top at 11.4 per cent growth.
Source : HKSG.