RM6.7m worth of drugs seized

Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s continued attacks on Datuk Seri Najib Razak will not succeed in toppling the prime minister, said analysts, because there is no one else capable of holding the top job.

They added that Najib’s Cabinet and Umno colleagues, together with Umno daily Utusan Malaysia, have also rallied to defend him against Dr Mahathir’s… …

Article source: http://my.news.yahoo.com/rm6-7m-worth-drugs-seized-000925647.html

ANA, Lufthansa announce cargo business tie-up

Tokyo (AFP) – Japan’s All Nippon Airways (ANA) and Lufthansa of Germany on Wednesday announced an air cargo tie up as they look to fight off intense competition from budget airlines on passenger routes.

The airlines said they had won regulatory approval for the agreement, which will see them integrate network planning, pricing, sales and handling on all routes between Japan and Europe.

“The two carriers aim to introduce the joint approach on shipments originating from Japan to Europe in winter 2014/2015 and for shipments from Europe to Japan in mid-2015,” they said in a statement.

“The joint venture will benefit customers by generating a greater selection of routings and a wider range of service options. Customers will especially profit from a larger and faster network with more direct flights, more destinations and more frequencies.”

ANA and Lufthansa, both members of the Star Alliance global airline network, launched a joint venture for Japan-Europe passenger flights two years ago.

The Japanese carrier holds a 17 percent market share for air freight between Japan and Europe, while Lufthansa has 16 percent, the leading Nikkei business daily said Wednesday.

Mainline carriers’ cargo businesses have become increasingly crucial to their bottom line as they battle budget airlines in the passenger market.

Article source: http://news.yahoo.com/ana-lufthansa-announce-cargo-business-tie-044813357--finance.html

Global Air Freight Market

The global demand environment for air cargo remains broadly positive. Business confidence, a key indicator of air freight growth, continues to signal expansion in economic activity, despite a moderation in the rate of increase in 2014.

World trade growth continues to pick over recent months, particularly in the United States and Asia. There is still no sign of an inventory overhang, despite a slight increase in the inventory-to-sales ratio, suggesting businesses have no immediate need to reduce their reliance on quick transportation of cargo.

The Middle East is seen as a particularly attractive air freight market, with strong growth levels relative to other parts of the world.

According to the most recent figures from the International Air Transport Association (IATA), Middle East air freight carriers witnessed the strongest air freight volumes results for the first seven months of this year.

Airlines in the region continue to reap benefit from the strength of regional economies and expansion in volumes of cross-border trade.

Middle East carriers posted a 9.8% annual increase in total market freight-ton-kilometres during the first seven months of the year. By way of comparison, global carriers posted a FTK increase of only 4.4% over the same period.

Middle East carriers also outperformed those in Asia Pacific (5%) rise over the same period), Africa (3.9%), Europe (3%), North America (2.3%) and South America (1%).

Air cargo is often seen as a bellwether for the global economy. Air freight markets have been improving over recent months. The modest pick-up in air freight demand is consistent with cyclical improvements in business conditions.

Consumers in Europe, the United States and elsewhere are becoming increasingly confident, which has supported growth in demand for commodities typically sent by airfreight.

On the other hand, rates of expansion remain weak on some major routes, including those connected to Asia, where improvements in trade volumes are yet to reflect in a corresponding rise in air freight demand.

Deutsche Post DHL, one of the world’s biggest parcel delivery groups, is making a bet on the air freight market by investing £156 million into sorting and aircraft landing facilities in East Midlands and at Heathrow.

The company anticipates that e-commerce as a proportion of total trading in Europe will expand from 8% today to 40% by 2025.

This is significant move, not only considering the size of the financial commitment but also due to the fact that the company is one of United Kingdom’s biggest foreign employers.

DHL has positioned itself to reap benefit from the rapid increase in online sales of consumer goods between China, Europe and North America. As a result, the logistics company has seen its sales volumes rise emphatically in the last several years.

DHL, which is one fifth owned by the German government, is also currently in the process of building an air freight network between Europe, United States, Shanghai and the Yangtze Valley.

Additional facilities are also under construction in United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Egypt.

Overall, industry data suggests that freight load factors and aircraft utilization rates have both rebounded after decline during much of 2013.

The improvements in demand have supported load factors despite increases in capacity through the passenger fleet. Stability in the freighter fleet combined with improvements in demand has resulted in the strong rebound in aircraft utilisation rates.

Airfreight growth this year is showing solid improvement when compared with last year, supported by cyclical upswing. However, high jet fuel prices and weakness in yields continue to place downward pressure on financial performance.

Source: IATA ODS

Graph 1: Air Freight Yields (US$ per kilo)

Source: IATA CASS

For more information on the Global air freight market, see the latest research: Global Air Freight Market

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Article source: http://uk.finance.yahoo.com/news/global-air-freight-market-000000098.html