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CMA CGM’s New Air Cargo Service: What it Means for the Shipping Industry

One of the leading worldwide container shipping carriers, CMA CGM Group, has created a new airfreight division offering a variety of record-time cargo flights linking Europe with several key regions, including Mexico, the United States, and Canada. The move is driven by growing demand for air cargo shipping, proving that air cargo is increasingly critical to the global supply chain.

Expanding to the Air

CMA CGM previously only operated ocean transport lines but has expanded into air transportation by obtaining a fleet of four Airbus A330-200 freighter aircraft from Qatar Airways. Ocean shipping still maintains certain advantages in terms of bulk capacity, wider geographic range, and lower overall rates. However, there is a substantial demand for the unbeatable transit times of air freight, with new strategically placed routes targeting some of the busiest commercial trade lanes in the world.

The service will offer both direct and regular flights, as well as inland solutions, allowing flexibility for shipments of all urgency levels. The frequency of cargo flights ranges from one flight per week to six for several key airports, including Liege, Chicago O’Hare International, John F. Kennedy International, and Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International.

Shifts to World Trade

These changes come at a critical time in world trade, significantly altering the global supply chain that has suffered from inconsistent cargo flows, fluctuating demand, and other limitations at the hands of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Demand for air cargo over the last year has risen while harsh quarantine measures limited global shipping capabilities, pushing air cargo rates up. CMA CGM's new airfreight division addresses this issue by increasing air capacity, causing air cargo rates to decrease slightly. As the post-pandemic world nears, it appears that faster air shipping will be at the forefront of many changes.

Whether it’s ocean freight, airfreight or road transportation, Clear freight is poised to offer our clients strategic solutions to meet their needs while simultaneously providing an unparalleled customer experience. Contact a team member today to hear how we can support your supply chain and help you navigate these turbulent times.

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