“Whatever the situation, the opportunity for me is in the way the world trade is progressing and particularly the growth in the middle class,” he says.
Because of the huge populations of regions such as China and Latin America, the increase in the middle class will greatly affect airfreight.
“They don’t want to buy goods from China,” Vertannes says. “They want to buy goods from Europe or America.”
This will lead to a better balance in East-West air trade.
The air cargo industry often looks at world trade growth as an indicator of airfreight growth. Right now, Brazil, Russia, India and China are fueling the development in global trade. But Vertannes says the commodities being traded, such as oil and timber, are never shipped primarily by air. That’s why he says air cargo’s growth lies with the hunger for consumer goods.
Meanwhile, there are more and more mega cities. “These cities are putting a huge strain on themselves as they attract new citizens,” Vertannes says. “Trying to power them, clothe them, feed them, educate them – they’re going to need air cargo, I can tell you, because they’re not all residing near ports.”