Air freight carriers in the Asia-Pacific region boosted global cargo volumes 5.8% in July—its best July performance in four years, according to IATA’s July air freight market analysis.

Asia-Pacific airlines’ cargo volumes grew 7.1% year-over-year in July, the region’s strongest performance of the year, and proved a potent lift to the air freight sector as a whole, considering the Asia-Pacific region encompasses 40% of the market share.

“The fortunes of the [Asia-Pacific] region’s carriers are tied to the strength of major economies such as China, Japan and South Korea, which are expanding again after a slowdown at the start of the year,” IATA said.

Solid increases in air cargo volume were seen throughout the world in July, save for Europe, where July growth was a modest 1.8%.  Europe’s July performance “reflects the effects of the Russia-Ukraine crisis (including the impact of mounting economic sanctions), which is adding to economic weakness in the Eurozone,” IATA said. Europe’s share of the global air freight market is 27%.

The global July numbers are a marked 3.5 point improvement on June’s 2.3% year-over-year growth. At this point in 2013, global air freight volume growth stood at just 1.2% over the previous year.

July air freight volumes were up 11.3% year-over-year in the Africa region, though IATA cautioned that “high volatility in volumes for this region … could cause some distortions in monthly figures.”

Middle East region carriers showed a 9.4% increase in volume for the month, as “airlines in the region are capturing opportunities for growth by introducing services to regions of strong and developing trade activity, including Mexico in Central America and Uganda in Africa,” IATA said.

Latin American carriers reported 7.6% FTK growth for the month, and North American airlines’ freight volumes were up 5.2% year-over-year.

Total market AFTK capacity increased 2.9% year-over-year during July, pushing the month’s global freight load factor to 44.4%, down half a point from June.

“The air cargo industry is moving at two speeds with a sharp divide in regional performance,” IATA DG and CEO Tony Tyler said. “European carriers reported anemic growth of just 1.8% while all other regions reported solid gains of 5% or more on the previous year. In particular, the 7.1% growth reported by airlines in Asia-Pacific is encouraging as it demonstrates a recovery in trade and a positive response to China’s economic stimulus measures.”