The panel agreed that air cargo was a lifeline for society and for aviation during the COVID-19 crisis. Global supply chains remained connected and critical medical supplies and vaccines were delivered. And air cargo activity provided vital revenues to combination carriers at a time when the passenger side of the business collapsed. Participants also agreed that indicators for future cargo growth were strong, such as inventory levels and manufacturing output, but capacity challenges remain.
All agreed that the pandemic accelerated the rise of e-commerce and pharma shipping and with it the digitalization of the supply chain and greater awareness of sustainability. New levels of cooperation between stakeholders across the supply chain were forged. To ensure the momentum from the crisis is not lost the panel urged all actors across the cargo ecosystem to continue to work together with the same levels of intensity to fast forward the digitization of the industry. There were also calls to fully utilize the data being gathered throughout the air cargo process to improve efficiency and to continue working to make aviation sustainable.