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Ontario International Airport freight shipments surge 30pc in June

AIRFREIGHT shipments increased by nearly 30 per cent in June and 20 per cent in the first half of the year at Ontario International Airport (ONT), the result of increased reliance on e-commerce as Californians continue to observe safer-at-home orders and turn to online shopping for many household supplies

26 July 2020 - 19:00

AIRFREIGHT shipments increased by nearly 30 per cent in June and 20 per cent in the first half of the year at Ontario International Airport (ONT), the result of increased reliance on e-commerce as Californians continue to observe safer-at-home orders and turn to online shopping for many household supplies.

Freight shipments totalled more than 79,000 tonnes in June, the fourth straight month that ONT experienced freight tonnage gains of 22 per cent or more. From January through June, ONT processed 422,000 tonnes, one-fifth more than the 351,000 tonnes handled in the first six months of last year.



'Ontario continues to be a focal point in the global supply chain that runs through Southern California, and a main reason why our region's economy continues to weather the current recession comparatively well,' said Mark Thorpe, chief executive officer of the Ontario International Airport Authority. 'Month after month, Ontario Airport and our airline partners have demonstrated that our people and facilities are up to the task of shouldering an increasingly heavier workload, especially during this time of uncertainty.'



Freight shipments through ONT were up 12 per cent by volume in February year over year, but in March, as the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic was felt across the aviation industry, freight tonnage climbed 22 per cent, followed by increases of 26 per cent in April and 24 per cent in May, reports AJOT.



The pandemic continued to depress passenger volume down in June, though at levels not as low as recent months. The number of ONT travellers declined by 93 per cent in April and 85 per cent in May.



In June, the number of ONT air travellers totalled 142,000, a 70 per cent decrease compared to June 2019 yet twice as many as May of this year. More than 140,300 passengers were aboard domestic flights with the remaining 1,700 being international customers, another encouraging note since there were no international passengers at ONT in April and May.



Over the first half of 2020, ONT passengers totalled more than 1.3 million, which was 48 per cent lower than the same period in 2019. Domestic passenger volume was more than 1.2 million, a drop of 47.5 per cent, while international travellers numbered 65,700, a decrease of 55 per cent.



'Freight shipments continue to drive commercial activity at Ontario, which is always a point of pride, particularly this year,' Mr Thorpe said. 'With ample room for growth, we expect Ontario will remain a magnet for economic activity in Southern California, and we anticipate considerable travel demand growth when passengers resume more normal business and leisure travel routines.'


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