10 September 2013, Trivandrum: Dr Temel Kotil, Chief Executive Officer, Turkish Airlines has said that the Turkish capital city of Istanbul is ideally positioned to be the global connection point for air travel within 10 years. While Europe’s traditional airports are struggling to add travellers as weak economies hurt demand, Istanbul is racing ahead with a double digit growth thanks largely to the phenomenal success of Turkish Airlines. Delivering the key-note address at the IBS Cargo Forum in Istanbul, Dr Kotil said Turkish Airlines is one of the fastest growing airlines in the world and well placed to hit 120 million passengers and 450 aircrafts by the year 2023. “It is the Turkish hospitality, the strong commitment and impeccable business practices that have propelled Turkish Airlines on this aggressive growth path” Dr Kotil added.
Turkish Airlines chief was addressing an audience of around 70 air cargo experts representing airlines including South African Airways, Qantas, Hawaiian Airlines, Lufthansa, All Nippon Airways, Nippon Cargo Airlines and Turkish Cargo. Over two days, industry stalwarts discussed key issues shaping the global air cargo industry and shared insights on strategies to address some of the critical challenges facing them. Mr Gary Hoyle of South African Airways has been appointed the new Chairman of the IBS Cargo Forum.
“Air freight traffic grew at 5.3% annually since 1980. Today goods worth $6.4 trillion travel by air – that’s 35% of all world trade by value. The growth rate is expected to be 4.9% for the next 20 years which means by the year 2023, traffic will double. However, the profit margins are nominal. Airlines have no control over their biggest cost element, fuel prices. Capacity utilization is less than 50% causing yield erosion. These statistics need to be kept in mind as we devise strategies on how we conduct business going forward” said Mr VK Mathews, Executive Chairman of IBS Software in his opening remark.
“We need to move on and make the best of a demanding situation. 90% of the time in the supply chain, the cargo is just waiting to be moved. This is where efficiencies need to come in. Digitised shipper to consignee process has to become standard to not only shorten the delivery time but also to reduce unit cost. Investment in new IT systems is inevitable to bring about a fundamental change in the way business is done at present” said a senior representative of a European Airline.
The two day conclave saw the unveiling of iCargo portal by IBS Software which would enable greater adaption of E-freight enhancing productivity. The first phase of the portal is expected to be complete by November and the second phase by the next financial year. IBS Software’s Air Cargo Forum brings together leading cargo airlines every six months where experts meet to discuss and debate how advancements in technology could be leveraged to optimize cost of operations and improve yields.