After tightening the rules per January 1st, the transportation of lithium batteries by air could be subject to even more restrictions in future.
Shipment of lithium metal batteries as cargo already has been prohibited aboard passenger aircraft. Lithium metal batteries packed with equipment or contained in equipment though, provided the mandatory procedures are followed, are still allowed. Recently some airlines announced that besides lithium metal batteries, they no longer carry rechargeable (lithium-ion) batteries in bulk shipments. The International Coordination Council of Aerospace Industry Associations, which represents aircraft companies, also is calling for stronger packaging and handling regulations for batteries shipped on cargo planes. It is expected that the dangerous goods panel of the International Civil Aviation Organization (a U.N. Agency) will come forward with new suggestions this April.
More information about the regulations on shipping lithium batteries can be found here
More information about the origin of the initiatives can be read via this link.