While key markets in global airfreight continue to suffer decline, “Australia is uniquely positioned and buoyed by requirements for niche outsize air cargo services which draw from Australia’s world class mining industry.”
According to Michael Amson of Melbourne-based charter specialist Chapman Freeborn: “We foresee a strong growth potential in the Australasia region for air cargo services. Australia’s large-scale investment in the mineral resources, with many projects still in the pipeline, a growing population and a country of vast proportion together with growing requirements for infrastructure and services.”
But he said challenges still remain, including the management of key supply routes and capacity into Australia. “For example, at present there are no main deck air cargo services into Perth, which is a major hub for mining traffic.
“Every resource project comes with an intricate logistics plan to ensure smooth operations and timely delivery of products,” Amson said. “However, operation breakdowns immediately bring up the need for air charter as spares and critical path construction items need to be promptly delivered to site. In most situations, aircraft chartering is the best hope in reducing non-productive time.”
In addition to mining, Amson said: “We see air chartering potential from industries such as aeronautical, energy, emergency management and the relief sector, with the strongest trade lanes to Australia being from Europe, China, and the US.
Domestically, Chapman Freeborn is seeing requirements for domestic movement of outsized cargo, which may not be suitable for road because of time considerations, and which may not be suitable for domestic air because of gauge and route limitations.