Agility Global Shipping
Updates: COVID-19

Product Updates

Air Freight

Air Freight Update

  • Worldwide capacity still falling. Global capacity is down 22% vs. last year, and additional declines are expected, according to Seabury. On a trade lane level, there is no longer any significant difference between capacity in/out of Asia and capacity in other regions.
  • Belly capacity declining, freighter capacity rising. Global belly capacity is 35% of what it was in January and still falling because of air travel restrictions and closed borders. Increases in freighter capacity are not sufficient to offset the loss of belly capacity. The current decline in belly capacity is equivalent to capacity of 400 Boeing 747-8 freighters a day, Seabury says.
  • Belly capacity declines last week were sharpest in Asia, Middle East. But lanes that traditionally rely most on belly capacity – Transatlantic (Europe-US) and Intra-Asia – have seen the sharpest declines in overall capacity.
  • Freighters now 75% of capacity along all trade lanes. Freighter capacity on Europe/US lanes has doubled since imposition of latest US travel restrictions and reached 80% of air cargo capacity on those routes last week. Nearly all major international airports seeing increases in freighter capacity.
  • Outbound China capacity is increasing. Freighter flights are increasing and above 2019 levels, despite continued constraints on belly capacity.

Origin: Americas

Restrictions:

  • Canada is closing its borders to non-citizens. Only four Canadian airports will accept international flights.
  • Latin America: Argentina has closed borders for two weeks beginning March 15, Chile has closed border to all foreigners starting on March 18, Peru has declared a state of emergency and closed borders starting on March 16, Colombia bans all new arrivals for a period of one month starting March 23. Brazil has sealed its borders to nine neighboring countries.
  • USA: US passenger travel restrictions from Europe have widened to include UK and Ireland. The US closed its border to non-essential travel with Mexico starting on March 21.

Cargo Impact:

  • North Americas-Europe: Significant capacity reductions in both directions. Space is available with constraints; no transit time guarantees.
  • North America-Asia: Capacity still constrained. Freighter schedules from the US are still inconsistent, but are ramping up and getting back to normal. Capacity constraints in Asian transit hubs remains to destination without direct flight options from the Americas.
  • North America- Middle East and Indian subcontinent: Significant capacity in both directions. Broad travel restrictions are reducing capacity to freighters only.
  • Latin America – Europe: Significant capacity reductions in both directions. Space is available with constraints; no transit time guarantees.
  • Latin America-Asia: Significant capacity reductions. In-transit though the US also subject to the same constraints as Americas-Asia trades.
  • Latin-America-USA: Capacity constrained. Significant passenger capacity reduction, but added cargo capacity via freighters.
  • Intra-Latin America: Significant capacity restrictions, because of passenger flight reductions. Broad travel restrictions are reducing capacity to freighters only, mostly served through Miami.

Origin: Asia

Restrictions:

  • Australasia: Australia and New Zealand have announced that borders are closed to all visitors from March 20.
  • China: New restrictions in China restrict Chinese airline carriers to only flying 1 route per week to/from China to all other countries. Foreign carriers may only fly to China once a week, irrespective of the origin point.
  • East Asia: Hong Kong imposed self-isolation requirements for all visitors for 14 days starting on March 19, and is considering mandatory quarantine for all new arrivals. Taiwan has banned entry for most foreigners, and is requiring two weeks of self-isolation for all arrivals.
  • India: With India announcing a total lockdown for three weeks starting  March 25, and all domestic and international flights halted, we are seeing a significant impact on airport operations and a high number of freighter cancellations because of restrictions on manpower.
  • Pakistan: International passenger flights were suspended on March 24 as all provinces went into government-mandated lockdown.
  • Southeast Asia: Significant capacity constraints on already squeezed intra-Asian trade lanes, due to a number of new restrictions in Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, Vietnam and Cambodia. Singapore announced that as of March 22, short-term visitors and transits through Singapore would be halted. Malaysia has extended its lockdown and air border closure to visitors through April 14. Vietnam announced on March 21 that it would halt inbound international flights, and Thailand closed all sea, air and land borders on March 25.

Cargo Impact:

  • Declines on all Asia routes: Wide-body capacity decreases have taken place across all routes to and from Asia-Pacific, according to Seabury.
  • Declines at all key cargo airports: All major Asian airports are showing declines in cargo capacity. Hong Kong, Shanghai and Beijing show the largest declines in cargo capacity.
  • Continued pressure on China outbound and inbound, but with some signs of recovery: Outbound air freight capacity is under tremendous pressure among all mainland China export markets as production resumes and passenger flight cancellations are sustained. A trend of ocean-to-air conversions exacerbates pressure on capacity outbound China. However, more freighters are entering the market.
  • Customers may want to explore alternative transport models (Sea/Air option or Cross-border truck).
  • Inbound capacity constraints from Europe, the Americas and the Middle East continue as all regions have reduced passenger operations to China.
  • Unprecedented rate surge on intra-Asian lanes: Massive capacity reduction resulting from passenger flight and freighter cancellations. Air freight rates on Intra-Asia lanes are extremely high, volatile and have been increasing rapidly, which are in turn constraining the long-haul export capacity to both Europe and US.
  • Hong Kong: Intra-Asia lanes are experiencing heavy congestion from South China, but the export market from Hong Kong to Europe and US is picking up gradually. We have seen a sharp increase in rates to both Europe and US triggered by new entry restrictions; charter rates have surged.

Origin: Europe

Restrictions

  • From March 17 for at least 30 days, the EU has closed off 26 countries – with a combined population of more than 400 million people – to nearly all visitors from the rest of the world.
  • Turkey has halted international passenger flights as of March 27, with exceptions for only five routes.  

Cargo Impact:

  • Europe – US: Capacity shortages and considerable increases to spot price rates. Space available with constraints.
  • Europe – China: Significant capacity constraints and surge in rates.
  • Europe – South East Asia: Significant capacity constraints in Europe- South East Asia trades due to the reduction in passenger flights. Rates are soaring.
  • Europe-Middle East: Significant capacity constraints and high rates. 

Origin: Middle East & Africa

Restrictions:

  • Arabian Gulf and the Levant: Passenger flights have been halted to and from Jordan, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and Qatar (although flights are still transiting through Doha). The UAE also suspended passenger flights for two weeks starting March 25.
  • There are no restrictions on cargo movement, and freighters continue to fly across the Arabian Gulf.
  • Oman: Oman closed its airports to all passenger aircraft on March 29. Freighter operations remained normal.
  • Iraq: Basra airport operations, for both cargo and passengers, will be on hold until March 25. Baghdad airport operations, for both cargo and passengers, will be on hold until March 25. Najaf airport is closed. Iraq has also partially stopped truck movements at certain border crossings with Turkey.
  • North Africa: Egypt has suspended flights from all airports until March 31, following a similar move by Morocco, which also closed land borders with Spain. Algeria has suspended air and sea travel with Europe from March 19. Tunisia also closed its land borders and suspended international flights on March 16.
  • Southern Africa: Travel restrictions are widening across Africa. Angola will halt international flights for two weeks from March 20. In South Africa, all national and international commercial flights have been terminated. Currently only “essential items” of food, cleaning and hygiene products, and medical supplies are being moved by air freight
  • West Africa: Ghana has closed all borders starting March 23, Nigeria closed all borders starting March 23.
  • East Africa: Kenya has halted all international incoming and outgoing passenger flights as of March 26. Uganda closed its border as of March 23. Rwanda has also closed its borders to all passenger flights. For both countries, cargo services will continue.

Cargo Impact:

  • Carriers are operating scheduled freighters, but cargo is also moving on an adhoc / unscheduled freighter or charter basis.  
  • Some passenger aircraft from the region’s largest carriers are now being converted into temporary freighters; flying with no passengers on board but with cargo in the hold.
  • Committed capacity can no longer be guaranteed; suspension of all contractual rates and tariffs
  • Rates for charters have doubled, and in many cases, are higher than that
  • Air freight rates have reached unprecedented levels. Premiums must be paid to get cargo uplifted on a priority basis.

Air Freight Update

  • The demand for air freight is there, but the overall market is not back at pre-COVID levels. Global demand fell by 13.5% in July balanced out by a 25% to 30% capacity reduction because of the loss of passenger flights and widebody belly capacity. Rates have come down, but they’re still higher than pre-COVID-19 times, depending on weekday and on how urgent the shipment is.
  • The International Air Transport Association (IATA) provides valuable resources and guidelines to support air transport professionals during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • The IATA Airlines Cargo Operations Status page offers status updates for nearly all of the world’s cargo carriers. On the page, which is searchable by carrier, operations are classified as Normal, Pending Information, Status Suspended, Some Service Impact, and Unknown.
Please find here our country trackers.

General

  • Due to the ongoing closing of European borders, delays are inevitable in international- and local deliveries
  • International line hauls for groupage shipments to and from Italy stopped from Thursday March 26, 2020
  • Upfront clarification needed if cargo can be picked-up or delivered to avoid demurrage and return cost 
  • Upfront clarification needed if cargo can be picked-up or delivered
  • More detailed on current road freight market developments can be found at the IRU (Road Transport Union) website here.
  • Information on delays at border crossings in near real time can be found here.
  • Further disruptions expected according to developing situation in other European countries
  • Alternative (ad-hoc) solutions to overcome limitations are available on request
  • Please find detailed information on schedules, capacities and constraints in the Agility Operational Tracker

Country by Country Overview

France:

  • Strong disruptions in local pick­-up and delivery­ activities
  • Local market is reaching capacity litmits for warehouse space
  • Limited capacity issues with availability of drivers and equipment on specific trade lanes

Germany:

  • Some disruptions in local pick­-up and delivery­ activities
  • Industry is more and more closing down production

Italy:

  • Strong disruptions due to government measures
  • Local pick­-up and delivery­ disruptions as well as international line haul delays due to closing down of domestic transport companies 
  • Hardly any service available in Italy due to the closing down of factories 
  • Traffic to/from CEE and Balkan countries is more and more delayed as well as some border crossings are being closed
  • Alternative (ad-hoc) solutions to overcome these limitations are available on request

Nordics:

  • Limited disruptions in local pick­-up and delivery­ activities
  • Industry is more and more closing down production

Portugal:

  • Limited disruptions in local pick­-up and delivery­ activities
  • Industry is more and more closing down production

Spain:

  • Strong disruptions due to government measures
  • Local pick­-up and delivery­ disruptions as well as international line haul delays
  • Industry is largely closing down production
  • Hardly any service available in Spain due to the closing down of non-essential industries
  • Alternative (ad-hoc) solutions to overcome these limitations are available on request

Switzerland:

  • Limited disruptions in local pick­-up and delivery­ activities

United Kingdom:

  • Some disruptions due to government measures
  • More disruptions in local pick-up and delivery activities

Others:

  • Russia: borders with European countries have been closed fro non-Russian drivers. St-Petersburg Port is reaching capacity limits
  • Eastern European: traffic to/from countries is delayed as well as some border crossings are being closed
  • Turkey: traffic to via Balkan-Route is blocked due to quarantine for the driver before entering Turkey as well as many borders being closed. Short Sea alternative available via port of Trieste (Italy), yet strongly congested
  • Please contact your local Agility contract for details on your country if not listed above

Americas Road Freight Update

  • No current indications of substantial road freight capacity issues. Though many governments have enforced a “shelter in place” rule, logistics operations fall within the current definition of “essential” business.
  • Road freight operations seem only to be hampered by availability of import volumes and export containers.

Asia Pacific Road Freight Update

Pakistan:

  • The borders  with Afghanistan are currently closed for all commercial movements , except for food and medical supplies
  • Customs and terminals are operative with squeezed office timings , short of staff due to lock down , operations are continue  
  • The Federal and Provincial Government has exempted the movement of essential goods, such as food, medical supplies, and fuel can be shipped within and between the cities without any restrictions

China:

  • Export shipment are experiencing serious delays in the gateway (4-5 days impact on the  clearance), Import is about 1 to 2day delays
  • There are currently no restrictions on in-country road freight shipments, however Hubei drivers are required to stay in quarantine for 14 days before heading to the border gateway
  • Vietnam border: Significant driver and equipment shortages and reduction of customs officers are causing inbound/outbound customs formality process delays. Drivers and vehicles are also required 14 days quarantines
  • Laos border: No significant impact
  • Thailand border: Padang Besar Border is currently closed, while the  Sadao Border is the only border thatis open and has an exemption for transportation, wherein 1 truck is only allowed with a single driver and the driver must go through health screening before entering into Thailand
  • Malaysia border: Movement Control Order- MITI approval required for all cross border shipment to be delivered to consignee’s premise. Singapore drivers are required to go into quarantine for 14 days after any travel in or out of Singapore
  • Singapore border: Non-restriction on commercial cargo for Cross border shipment

Middle-East Road Freight Update

Bahrain:

  • The King Fahd Causeway connecting Bahrain with Saudi Arabia remains heavily congested, with only food and essential life science products currently permitted to be exported from Bahrain
  • The lead-time for a truck to arrive at Bahrain Customs at King Fahd Causeway from Khalifa Port is taking a minimum of 4 – 5 days (normal lead time is half a day)
  • The Saudi Arabia authorities have stopped issuing ‘Transit Visa’s’ for heavy duty drivers except for Food and Essential life science products and only from the Saudi embassy in Bahrain city instead of the Saudi immigration office at King Fahd Causeway
  • There are currently no local restriction imposed on in-country road freight transportation
  • Sea freight is the most common alternate mode of shipping being advised to our customers

Iraq:

  • Borders with Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, and Jordan remain closed
  • The border with Turkey, although there are currently severe delays and Turkish trucks are not permitted to enter Iraq and so have to transfer cargo to Iraqi trucks
  • Within Kurdistan, In country movement is allowed, however Government approval is required prior shipments
  • Within Iraq, Basra, Baghdad no road freight is permitted, however Agility is currently in the process of obtaining Government approval to allow truck movement deliveries to oil fields

Jordan:

  • The Jaber border with Lebanon is operating normally using back-to-back loading procedures for all cargo shipments
  • For all shipments via the Omari borders, arriving from GCC countries are delayed due to additional COVID19 test results certificates (Drivers unable to present the test result will be quarantined for 14 days before moving to their final destination in Jordan)
  • Amman and Aqaba customs are operating in split shifts and providing priority to food and healthcare products which is causing delays
  • Restrictions are in place for in-country road freight, with priority given to food and Pharma goods and permits required for all drivers
  • We are currently advising clients to use the sea freight where possible and Agility can provide storage solutions for any cargo delayed at Aqaba port

Kuwait:

  • From Kuwait there are restrictions on the export of all food and medical items
  • The Saudi border is only allowing food, medicine, military cargo and relief items to transit through the land border and so Kuwait are unable to provide road freight services to The UAE, Bahrain, Jordan and Oman  
  • For local deliveries within Kuwait, we are working at limited capacity, as containers must be picked by 3.30 pm
  • Exemption passes can be obtained on a limited basis to carry out emergency deliveries 

Lebanon:

  • Customs authorities are operating with minimum staff and reduced working hours, leading to delays of 1 to 2 days and currently only Lebanese drivers are currently allowed to cross the borders
  • There are currently no restrictions to In-country road freight movements

Oman:

  • Customs clearance operations are continuing without any restrictions at all four road borders – Wajajah, Wadi Al Jizi, Khatmat Milaha and Hafeet in Oman
  • There are no restrictions for import trucks in entering Oman.
  • Oman registered trucks are currently not allowed to exit Oman for any GCC countries including UAE
  • The other GCC registered trucks are carrying backloads from Oman with restrictions as imposed by KSA government for both transit trucks and final delivery into KSA.
  • There are no restrictions yet for domestic deliveries and distribution

Saudi Arabia:

  • Imports into Saudi Arabia are moving as normal, however trans shipments are limited to essential products only (Medical supplies and food etc)
  • A curfew is in place, restricting the movement of goods via road freight except for food and medical supplies; Outside of the curfew all goods are able to move within the country, although there are restrictions within highly infected areas.
  • Agility trucks currently have permissions to move within the country during curfew
  • Road Freight Capacity is currently down by 20-30%, causing an increase in rates
  • Deliveries from the ports to customers in Saudi are also facing delay
  • All borders fees and rates remain the same but with delays: special sanitization process and dedicated driver checks are taking place at all borders and the new border process is causing delays of 1-2 days
  • All cargo is currently allowed in Saudi as a final destination from Kuwait, UAE and Bahrain
  • All borders with Yemen have been closed, except for Al-Wadeea and Yemeni trucks are not allowed to cross the border into Saudi Arabia (trans loading to Saudi trucks taking roughly 5 days)
  • Saudi trucks back loaded from Yemen with mostly Yemeni drivers, taking an additional 14 days due to extra COVID-19 precautions
  • Egyptian drivers are currently not allowed to enter KSA and as a result the majority of trucks coming from Egypt are trans loading the cargo on a locally operating trucks
  • From Jordan, only Jordanian and Saudi Arabian drivers and trucks are allowed to enter through the border
  • All cargo from Lebanon via road are trans loading to Jordanian or Saudi trucks at OMARI border (Jordan land)
  • All cargo from Syria via road are also trans loading to Jordanian or Saudi trucks at AL-JABER border (Jordan land)
  • The Iraq / Saudi border remains closed
  • We advise customers to ship cargo via sea and air where possible

Turkey:

  • Land borders between Turkey and CIS countries are subject to additional checks, but currently open without restrictions
  • Imports entering Turkey from the EU and CIS countries are currently facing lengthy delays and significant capacity constraints
  • Borders with Iraq are only allowing the movement of essential products, such as medicines and foods
  • There are currently no restrictions to in-country road freight

UAE (Abu Dhabi & Dubai):

  • There are current restrictions on transit routes to Kuwait, Bahrain and Jordan due to the new Saudi Arabia transit rule which limits the driver’s transit visa issuance only through its local embassy (currently closed)
  • Only basic goods (Food , Medicine and relief shipments) are allowed entry into Saudi Arabia subject to The Food and Medicine Authority determination
  • We expect border delays due to  strict health screening of driver’s
  • For in-country road freight there is currently capacity issues with availability of drivers and equipment due to high market demand on distribution and export shipments
  • There is currently no road restrictions on in-country road freight
  • Strict health screening by sea port and airports on all trucks operating in those areas

Africa Road Freight Update

Egypt:

  • The Egyptian Customs Authority are working with restricted hours from Saturday till Thursday from 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM
  • There is currently an imposed curfew being applied for the next 15 days on all roads from 7:00 pm – 6:00 am daily. During this period only food and essential medical supplies are allowed to move via road freight
  • Sea ports are closing at 4pm and local deliveries within Egypt are significantly delayed and are taking as long as 3 days

Kenya:

  • There are currently no restrictions on border crossing in and out of Kenya for road freight shipments
  • Health screenings for drivers are taking place which is causing some delays
  • There are currently no restrictions on in-country road freight shipments

South Africa:

  • Currently customs authorities are only processing essential products
  • All other borders except Ressano Garcia are closed indefinitely
  • There are restrictions on in-country road freight for only essential items only essential services however awaiting our government final feedback
  • Permit requirements – Awaiting feedback from our government department
  • We are advising customer to move goods by ocean where possibly and not road.
  • We are also assisting customer with storage facilities for their goods containers, LCL and airfreight.

Mozambique:

  • Mozambique – has closed borders to both import and transit loads unless the load is on a Mozambican registered vehicle with a Mozambique citizen driving
  • Nyamapanda will allow foreign vehicles to transit only to Malawi if the vehicle is carrying essential cargo, and after drivers pass a health check

Please find here our Country Tracker

Air Freight Update

  • Worldwide capacity still falling. Global capacity is down 22% vs. last year, and additional declines are expected, according to Seabury. On a trade lane level, there is no longer any significant difference between capacity in/out of Asia and capacity in other regions.
  • Belly capacity declining, freighter capacity rising. Global belly capacity is 35% of what it was in January and still falling because of air travel restrictions and closed borders. Increases in freighter capacity are not sufficient to offset the loss of belly capacity. The current decline in belly capacity is equivalent to capacity of 400 Boeing 747-8 freighters a day, Seabury says.
  • Belly capacity declines last week were sharpest in Asia, Middle East. But lanes that traditionally rely most on belly capacity – Transatlantic (Europe-US) and Intra-Asia – have seen the sharpest declines in overall capacity.
  • Freighters now 75% of capacity along all trade lanes. Freighter capacity on Europe/US lanes has doubled since imposition of latest US travel restrictions and reached 80% of air cargo capacity on those routes last week. Nearly all major international airports seeing increases in freighter capacity.
  • Outbound China capacity is increasing. Freighter flights are increasing and above 2019 levels, despite continued constraints on belly capacity.

Origin: Americas

Restrictions:

  • Canada is closing its borders to non-citizens. Only four Canadian airports will accept international flights.
  • Latin America: Argentina has closed borders for two weeks beginning March 15, Chile has closed border to all foreigners starting on March 18, Peru has declared a state of emergency and closed borders starting on March 16, Colombia bans all new arrivals for a period of one month starting March 23. Brazil has sealed its borders to nine neighboring countries.
  • USA: US passenger travel restrictions from Europe have widened to include UK and Ireland. The US closed its border to non-essential travel with Mexico starting on March 21.

Cargo Impact:

  • North Americas-Europe: Significant capacity reductions in both directions. Space is available with constraints; no transit time guarantees.
  • North America-Asia: Capacity still constrained. Freighter schedules from the US are still inconsistent, but are ramping up and getting back to normal. Capacity constraints in Asian transit hubs remains to destination without direct flight options from the Americas.
  • North America- Middle East and Indian subcontinent: Significant capacity in both directions. Broad travel restrictions are reducing capacity to freighters only.
  • Latin America – Europe: Significant capacity reductions in both directions. Space is available with constraints; no transit time guarantees.
  • Latin America-Asia: Significant capacity reductions. In-transit though the US also subject to the same constraints as Americas-Asia trades.
  • Latin-America-USA: Capacity constrained. Significant passenger capacity reduction, but added cargo capacity via freighters.
  • Intra-Latin America: Significant capacity restrictions, because of passenger flight reductions. Broad travel restrictions are reducing capacity to freighters only, mostly served through Miami.

Origin: Asia

Restrictions:

  • Australasia: Australia and New Zealand have announced that borders are closed to all visitors from March 20.
  • China: New restrictions in China restrict Chinese airline carriers to only flying 1 route per week to/from China to all other countries. Foreign carriers may only fly to China once a week, irrespective of the origin point.
  • East Asia: Hong Kong imposed self-isolation requirements for all visitors for 14 days starting on March 19, and is considering mandatory quarantine for all new arrivals. Taiwan has banned entry for most foreigners, and is requiring two weeks of self-isolation for all arrivals.
  • India: With India announcing a total lockdown for three weeks starting  March 25, and all domestic and international flights halted, we are seeing a significant impact on airport operations and a high number of freighter cancellations because of restrictions on manpower.
  • Pakistan: International passenger flights were suspended on March 24 as all provinces went into government-mandated lockdown.
  • Southeast Asia: Significant capacity constraints on already squeezed intra-Asian trade lanes, due to a number of new restrictions in Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, Vietnam and Cambodia. Singapore announced that as of March 22, short-term visitors and transits through Singapore would be halted. Malaysia has extended its lockdown and air border closure to visitors through April 14. Vietnam announced on March 21 that it would halt inbound international flights, and Thailand closed all sea, air and land borders on March 25.

Cargo Impact:

  • Declines on all Asia routes: Wide-body capacity decreases have taken place across all routes to and from Asia-Pacific, according to Seabury.
  • Declines at all key cargo airports: All major Asian airports are showing declines in cargo capacity. Hong Kong, Shanghai and Beijing show the largest declines in cargo capacity.
  • Continued pressure on China outbound and inbound, but with some signs of recovery: Outbound air freight capacity is under tremendous pressure among all mainland China export markets as production resumes and passenger flight cancellations are sustained. A trend of ocean-to-air conversions exacerbates pressure on capacity outbound China. However, more freighters are entering the market.
  • Customers may want to explore alternative transport models (Sea/Air option or Cross-border truck).
  • Inbound capacity constraints from Europe, the Americas and the Middle East continue as all regions have reduced passenger operations to China.
  • Unprecedented rate surge on intra-Asian lanes: Massive capacity reduction resulting from passenger flight and freighter cancellations. Air freight rates on Intra-Asia lanes are extremely high, volatile and have been increasing rapidly, which are in turn constraining the long-haul export capacity to both Europe and US.
  • Hong Kong: Intra-Asia lanes are experiencing heavy congestion from South China, but the export market from Hong Kong to Europe and US is picking up gradually. We have seen a sharp increase in rates to both Europe and US triggered by new entry restrictions; charter rates have surged.

Origin: Europe

Restrictions

  • From March 17 for at least 30 days, the EU has closed off 26 countries – with a combined population of more than 400 million people – to nearly all visitors from the rest of the world.
  • Turkey has halted international passenger flights as of March 27, with exceptions for only five routes.  

Cargo Impact:

  • Europe – US: Capacity shortages and considerable increases to spot price rates. Space available with constraints.
  • Europe – China: Significant capacity constraints and surge in rates.
  • Europe – South East Asia: Significant capacity constraints in Europe- South East Asia trades due to the reduction in passenger flights. Rates are soaring.
  • Europe-Middle East: Significant capacity constraints and high rates. 

Origin: Middle East & Africa

Restrictions:

  • Arabian Gulf and the Levant: Passenger flights have been halted to and from Jordan, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and Qatar (although flights are still transiting through Doha). The UAE also suspended passenger flights for two weeks starting March 25.
  • There are no restrictions on cargo movement, and freighters continue to fly across the Arabian Gulf.
  • Oman: Oman closed its airports to all passenger aircraft on March 29. Freighter operations remained normal.
  • Iraq: Basra airport operations, for both cargo and passengers, will be on hold until March 25. Baghdad airport operations, for both cargo and passengers, will be on hold until March 25. Najaf airport is closed. Iraq has also partially stopped truck movements at certain border crossings with Turkey.
  • North Africa: Egypt has suspended flights from all airports until March 31, following a similar move by Morocco, which also closed land borders with Spain. Algeria has suspended air and sea travel with Europe from March 19. Tunisia also closed its land borders and suspended international flights on March 16.
  • Southern Africa: Travel restrictions are widening across Africa. Angola will halt international flights for two weeks from March 20. In South Africa, all national and international commercial flights have been terminated. Currently only “essential items” of food, cleaning and hygiene products, and medical supplies are being moved by air freight
  • West Africa: Ghana has closed all borders starting March 23, Nigeria closed all borders starting March 23.
  • East Africa: Kenya has halted all international incoming and outgoing passenger flights as of March 26. Uganda closed its border as of March 23. Rwanda has also closed its borders to all passenger flights. For both countries, cargo services will continue.

Cargo Impact:

  • Carriers are operating scheduled freighters, but cargo is also moving on an adhoc / unscheduled freighter or charter basis.  
  • Some passenger aircraft from the region’s largest carriers are now being converted into temporary freighters; flying with no passengers on board but with cargo in the hold.
  • Committed capacity can no longer be guaranteed; suspension of all contractual rates and tariffs
  • Rates for charters have doubled, and in many cases, are higher than that
  • Air freight rates have reached unprecedented levels. Premiums must be paid to get cargo uplifted on a priority basis.