(a) State four reasons why transport is important to commerce.
(b) Explain three advantages and three disadvantages of air transport.
(A) Transport is important to commerce in the following ways:
(i) Transport facilitates the movement of goods and persons.
(ii) It conveys raw materials and capital goods to production sites.
(iii) It increases the volume of trade by widening the markets for various products thereby leading to economic growth and development.
(iv) It facilitates the import and export of goods and services.
(v) It influences the location of industries in a particular place.
(vi) It encourages specialization which results in more and cheaper goods, thus increasing the standard of living.
(B) The Advantages of Air Transport are:
(i) It is a fast method of transport.
(ii) The danger of damage to delicate fragile and perishable goods is reduced.
(iii) The cost of insurance of goods by air is reduced because of the shorter time the insurance company is at risk.
(iv) It is a more comfortable means of transport hence suitable for long journeys.
(v) Less handling is required for goods being transported by air/pilfering is reduced.
(vi) Markets are extended as distant markets are reached in matters of minutes or hours by air transport.
(vii) The rate of accidents is minimal.
Disadvantages of Air Transport are:
(i) It is a very expensive method of transport/high cost of freight.
(ii) The speed of air transport is often offset by delays at the air terminals.
(iii) Weather conditions can severally upset air transport.
(iv) Flights are usually on a fixed schedules, not flexible, which may not always suit the businessman.
(v) It is unsuitable for the transport of certain kinds of goods, e.g. heavy machinery.
(vi) Accidents, when they occur, are generally disastrous.
(vii) It requires trans-shipment/It does not provide door-to-door services.
(viii) it is capital intensive as much capital is needed to buy aircraft, build and maintain airports.