As both investors and gamblers know, risk and reward are usually closely related, with the opportunity for the largest rewards frequently correlating with a higher level of risk. Some of the risk is down to chance, with the remainder left to knowing when a risky action is worth undertaking and how to hedge against risk where you can.
Just as the market has adjusted to airfreight operations in a pandemic, new global disruptions in the form of sudden lockdowns in China and the war in Ukraine present new risks to airlines and freight forwarders. In a miniature repetition of April 2020, flights were once again canceled suddenly, with those companies re-establishing normal operations forced to pivot again. Rates and surcharges have also risen alongside cancellations and reroutings to justify the increased risk.
Disruptions aside, normal commerce is ongoing and requires that operators adjust to the demands of the market as they arise. April’s lead feature “The Deal: Winning hand is a pair in e-commerce logistics” examines recent partnerships from major e-commerce logistics providers taking aim at the small and mid-sized enterprise (SME) sector. The uncertain environment of 2022 has pushed operators to become creative and to mitigate risks where they can, and UPS and Alibaba Group’s Cainiao Network are teaming up with smaller companies in the direct-to-consumer e-commerce space to expand their reach in this promising sector without the need to invest in building out the capabilities themselves.
Speaking of risks, dangerous goods (DGs) shipments — especially of lithium ion batteries — have presented major risks for carriers in recent years due to improperly declared shipments. The industry is determined to improve the safety record and risk mitigation for those shipments. This month’s feature from Associate Editor Kelly Stroh, “A chain of responsibility: Lithium batteries and upholding airfreight safety,” covers the current challenges in lithium battery shipments by air and the promising new procedures that can improve safety for all parties involved in these increasingly necessary shipments.
Technologies to make DG shipments safer will be one of the many topics of discussion on the agenda for Air Cargo World’s new live event, the Air Cargo Tech Summit. The inaugural event will take place from June 6-7 at the JW Marriott Marquis Miami, with an agenda of panel discussions and presentations covering the most important technological improvements across air cargo logistics. For more information or to register, visit the event’s home page here.
We hope to see our readers in Miami in June!
Editor, Air Cargo World