Focusing on Eastern Europe this year, the Cargo in Emerging Markets conference was once again a great success. Discussions, exchanges of viewpoint and testimonials were highly instructive, providing the audience with very good insight into the region.
Day one examined the new European Union countries of Central Europe and the Baltic States, and shared views on the impact the enlargement of the EU has had on air cargo. In addition, possible scenarios for the future were analysed.
Security and Environment were also hot topics that day. IATA’s economic data showed how reality can be very different from perception.
Day two was dedicated to countries not part of the EU, mainly Russia and the Ukraine. Opportunities and challenges were on the menu, and a lot was learned from companies that operate in these countries. Sustained growth will continue to offer great opportunities to win new markets, and massive investments are likely to continue.
However as one speaker illustrated: “this is not going to be a gold rush, it will take hard work, sweat and tears.”
Some of the challenges in the region are
- Airport and road-network infrastructure needs to be enhanced
- An aligned growth strategy between all the local stakeholders (whether private or public operators) and the local authorities needs to be defined
- Clear traffic flow imbalance needs to be overcome, imports being much greater than exports
Furthermore Eastern Europe is not a unified region, but a very diverse mix of countries, cultures, regulations, currencies and business practices.
For news on progress and actions arising from this event, please join us at
IATA World Cargo Symposium 2008
Focus on the Customer
3-6 March 2008 — Rome, Italy