Tuesday, June 22, 2004 - Air freight has been the fastest growing segment of the American cargo industry according to a new report released today by the U.S. Department of Transportation's Bureau of Transportation Statistics. The report, titled Freight Shipments in America, shows that the total value of air freight moved in the United States doubled from 1993 to 2002 and now totals $2.7 billion a day, growth that was faster than any other segment of the cargo industry.
"Cargo is one of the fastest growing segments of the U.S. economy," said Secretary of Transportation Norman Y. Mineta. "Now we know exactly how much transportation is literally moving the American economy every day."
The overall cargo industry has seen tremendous growth over the past decade. Between 1993 and 2002, the total amount of freight transported in America grew 18 percent to 16 billion tons while the total value of that freight grew 45 percent to $10.5 trillion. The news was even better for movers of smaller parcels. There was a 56 percent increase in the value of under 500 pound shipments from 1993 to 2002.
"Reliable transportation data shapes policy and drives good investments in transportation systems," said Secretary Mineta. "Understanding the role freight plays in our economy is crucial if we are going to sustain today's fast-growing economy in the years ahead."
The report presents the latest information on freight movements in the United States. Based on a comprehensive survey, it describes the freight American businesses transported in 2002 and relates these shipments to trends in the U.S. economy. The report also freight trends by form of transportation, type of commodity, distance shipped and shipment size.
The Freight Shipments in America report was released today during a news conference at the Louisville International Airport. The airport today received a $6.2 million grant to expand its cargo runway and improve the roads used to move cargo into and out of the airport.
To view a copy of Freight Shipments in America, or for more information about the new study, see the Department's Bureau of Transportation Statistics website, www.bts.gov. The numbers released today in "Freight Shipments in America" are preliminary. Final numbers will be released later in 2004.
June 22, 2004