IN BRIEF, THE LATEST AIR FREIGHT INDUSTRY NEWS.
First Olympic horses took off from Liege
These days, Liege airport people and freight handlers are kept busy organizing a demanding type of air transport from the Walloon airport to Rio de Janeiro. In total, 185 sports horses will pass through the airport’s gates until 7 August on their way to the Olympic Games, with the first ones flown out on 30 July. In order to ensure that the air bridge between Liege and Rio functions, Emirates SkyCargo was engaged. On each flight, the horses are accompanied by grooms and vets, and several tons of supplies (equipment, food and hay, etc.) will be loaded on to the aircraft.
Before they take part in the three events – jumping, dressage and eventing – the horses are accommodated at LGG Airport in state-of-the-art facilities, called HORSE INN. It has been operational since May 2016, comprising 55 horse boxes in a well-insulated, secure building, which is well-ventilated in summer. Experts had designed that building to ensure the absolute well-being and physical condition of the horses, emphasizes the airport in a release.
UPS expands Worldwide Express to three new countries
United Parcels Service (UPS) has added three new destinations into its Worldwide Express (WWE) product.
The service which guarantees UPS’s customers delivery between 10:30 a.m., 12 noon or 2 p.m. on the next business day is now available in a total of 117 countries.
The new additions are Myanmar, Albania and the Dominican Republic.
The UPS WWE product is of special interest to those shipping high-tech, healthcare sector and industrial manufacturing areas.
The total number of destinations is expected to continue growing in the coming few years.
Virgin Australia adds new freighters
Since the Australian Post contract, which was run by Virgin Australia transferred to Qantas, the airline has been taking a close look at the composition of its freighter fleet. Now, they have decided to order additional aircraft to cater for their five-year contract recently signed with TNT Express.
Virgin Australia’s cargo unit is now a stand-alone entity and has as well as offering belly space on their own fleet to 47 domestic destinations, taken up ACMI freighter leases with Skyforce Aviation and Airwork, a carrier based in New Zealand. Skyforce gives Virgin Convair-580 and BAe 146-200 freighter uplift and Airwork supplies a Boeing 737-300 freighter.
Cathay Pacific puts two more freighters into the desert
The Hong Kong-based carrier which used to operate a large B747F fleet has now put a further two freighter aircraft into retirement. The aircraft have gone back to Boeing Capital from whom they were leased and Boeing will either have to find new clients for them or consider putting them into the desert.
This reduces CX’s freighter fleet considerably and one has to wonder whether with the new cargo partnership with Lufthansa Cargo, Cathay will retire even more freighter capacity in the future.
HNA Group to up its investment in Yangtze River Express
A total of almost US$560 million will be invested in the Chinese cargo carrier Yangtze River Express by Hainan Airlines and the HNA Logistics Group. The investment is aimed at funding Yangtze’s network expansion development on the eastern Chinese coast.
The investment amount will be split among Hainan Airlines and the HNA Logistics Group.
There are three other main shareholders besides the above mentioned in Yangtze River Express, but they are not taking part of the new investment.
The Yangtze fleet is now made up of three B747-400Fs, a total of nineteen B737Fs and it also operates two B737-800 aircraft in passenger services.
European Shippers Council chairman appointed to the TIACA Board
Denis Choumert who is presently Chairman of the European Shippers Council (ESC) has now also joined the TIACA Board of Directors.
Choumert has held the position on the ESC since 2012 and also holds director positions on other transport associations.
Mr Choumert, who is also a Board Director for the French waterways as well as being the chairman of the French Shippers council (AUTF) stated upon his appointment to the TIACA Board that “as chairman of the ESC, which represents European Shippers interests but also works actively with Asian and American Shippers associations within the Global Shippers Alliance, I am honoured to be able to join TIACA’s Board.”
John Mc Donagh / Heiner Siegmund