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   Vol. 18 No. 55
Tuesday September 3, 2019

Shah Of Flexport On Hong Kong Dust Up
Neel Shah Of Flexport

  Neel Jones Shah is a smart guy and a dreamer and doer.
  He is no shrinking violet either, but rather someone who is actively on the front lines of change having moved rather easily from top management at the airlines into top management at the wunderkind bunch at Flexport where he serves as EVP and Global Head of Airfreight.
In addition, Neel sits on the Board of Directors of Amerijet International Holdings, Global K9 Protection Group and is a Senior Advisor to The Boston Consulting Group.
  Prior to Flexport, Neel served as the Senior Vice President & Chief Cargo Officer for Delta Air Lines.
As the head of Delta Cargo, he led approximately 2,000 employees worldwide and oversaw over $1 Billion in freight & mail revenue.
So while unrest in Hong Kong ahead of the vaunted end of year rush continues to cloud an otherwise lackluster 2019 Neel leans in with some thoughts of what’s up and likely to happen.

FT:  What impact has Hong Kong unrest having on cargo to and from China & Intra Asia Pacific?
NJS:  The bulk of disruption at the Hong Kong airport was to belly cargo. Since the vast majority of our capacity is via our own Private Air Service or other freighters, we did not face many issues. We’re keeping a close eye on the situation. Things can change overnight so we’re staying close to clients and partners to keep everyone informed.

FT:  Looking ahead, what will be the impact on the traditional Christmas rush?
NJS: It’s too early to speculate how the unrest in Hong Kong will impact the holiday rush. However, with the level of volatility in the market, airlines will have to plan accordingly to handle the increased demand for capacity, on top of any unforeseen issues like regional unrest or new tariffs.

FT:  What other impacts?
NJS: Near term: There may be isolated volume increases ahead of the Sept. 1 and Dec. 15 tariff deadlines, which will strain the supply chain further downstream.
  West coast warehouses are already saturated with inventory from companies front loading in late 2018 and early 2019. We’ll see rate increases across trucking, rail and warehousing to accommodate spikes in demand.
  Long term: Uncertainty is the new norm. All stakeholders will need to plan and allocate resources appropriately.

FT:  What should shippers do; What are you advising your shipping partners?
NJS: Start planning now. We may see continued volatility this year, including renewed unrest in Hong Kong, a hard no-deal Brexit, or a flare up of Middle East hostilities coupled with annual holiday shipping capacity constraints. With all of these events coming together, shippers will need to have a plan.

FT:  Any other thoughts about this year, such as the tariff situation.
NJS: You know, no one wins in a trade war. Our mission is to make global trade easy for everyone, so any obstacle in the way of trade is one too many. The U.S.-China market could be hit with a capacity crunch as shippers assess the potential savings to avoid tariff impacts, especially at the end of August 2019. Many shippers will try and take advantage of the available capacity, especially the capacity that Flexport is able to offer, in order to avoid the additional cost from potential tariffs. This uptick will tighten the capacity from China to U.S. and potentially justify the need for greater freighter capacity on the trade lane.

If You Missed Any Of The Previous 3 Issues Of FlyingTypers
Access complete issue by clicking on issue icon or
Access specific articles by clicking on article title
Vol. 18 No. 52
Hong Kong Chaos
Virgin Parties Times 30
Chuckles for August 13, 2019
Turkish Cargo Doing What Comes Naturally

Vol. 18 No. 53
Stan 'The Man' Hong Kong Plan
Vanya & Jennifer—United Cargo's
Front Line Connection

Chuckles for August 19, 2019

Vol 18 No. 54
Cathay Keelhauled By China Media
CNS President Looks Ahead
Chuckles for August 26, 2019
MIA Too Hot To Handle

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