Double-Strike planned in France and Italy on 14 JAN 20
A4E has alerted LinkedIn subscribers to that fact that Air Traffic Controls in France and Italy have planned to strike this Tuesday. The red area in the map shows the extent of the overflight ban which will be in effect between 12:00 and 16:00 UTC and will cause major EU flight disruptions and cancellations.
In the case of Italy, airport staff (at almost all major Italian airports) and airline employees from Air Italy, Alitalia, Blueair, Bulgarian, Easyjet, and Volotea, are due to join the ATC in their strike. That said, Italy has often pulled out of planned strikes at the last minute and may again do so on 14 JAN 20. Nevertheless, given that airlines plan alternatives in advance, flights will still be disrupted.
France, on the other hand, has been in a grip of travel strikes for months now, and is likely to go ahead.
New Year, New Board Members for BUD Airport
There is no stopping BUD in its move to become the key hub in Central and Eastern Europe, and the airport enters the new year with the appointment of two seasoned heads to its Board of Directors on 08JAN20: Sir Michael Hodgkinson, previously the CEO of BAA, the UK airports company, and Vazil Hudák, formerly Vice-President of the European Investment Bank (EIB).
Hodgkinson stated: "Ferenc Liszt International Airport is a fascinating place with great potential. With its infrastructure it creates the conditions to satisfy the growing travel demand of people in the entire region." His extensive background in travel and transportation includes acting as Deputy Chairman of the Supervisory Board TUI AG up until 2018, as Director of Dublin Airport, and a non-executive director role at Transport for London and Crossrail Limited. He was BAA plc’s Chief Executive from 1999 to 2003.
Hudák underlined: “We want to make our contribution to ensuring that Budapest Airport will be the most successful airport in Central and Eastern Europe in terms of passenger growth, service quality and operational efficiency.” During his role as Vice-President of the EIB since 2016, the large international projects under his responsibility included those involved with transport financing in Eastern European countries. His previous functions were lead Slovak negotiator for the EU Budget, Slovakia’s Minister for the Economy, and State Secretary at the Ministry of Finance, as well as various private corporate sector initiatives.
Swissport Belgium and Lufthansa Cargo continue their relationship
The cargo handling agreement was renewed for another five years at the end of last month. Swissport Belgium which, in addition to providing ground services for some 7.5 million passengers a year, also handles over half a million tons of cargo annually, continues on its growth path. Just last October, it inaugurated its state-of-the-art Pharma Center at Brussels Airport. It is currently revamping its existing 25,000m² warehouse, and has invested in a new office building for itself and its cargo customers.
The agreement with Lufthansa Cargo will run until the end of 2024 and covers warehousing and cargo ramp transportation of general cargo, mail, pharma and valuables for Brussels Airlines, Lufthansa and Austrian Airlines at both Brussels and Liège airports. The two companies have also pledged to work on digitalization to further reduce costs and improve processes.
Rudolf Steiner, Swissport’s senior vice president cargo for Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) commented: “We are pleased to anchor the cargo handling business for Lufthansa Cargo at Brussels Airport and look forward to further growing our cooperation across our global network”.
New York, USA: Air-City has been acquired by SEKO Logistics
Chicago-based, long-standing air freight forwarder SEKO Logistics, has recently been on a spending-spree in its strategy to expand its ecommerce expertise and global reach. Following the acquisition of GoodShip International in Chicago earlier this month, and the majority shareholding in its strategic partner Omni-Channel Logistics Australia recently, the purchase now of New York-based Air-City is the largest yet in the company’s 44-year history.
Air-City not only brings extensive freight forwarding and cross-border ecommerce expertise but will also greatly increase SEKO’s service offer in its New York Gateway, with more plans regarding the expansion of SEKO’s JFK operations to be made public later this year.
Air-City’s key attraction for SEKO is the fact that it was among the first group of freight agents authorized by the Chinese government in 1994 to establish enterprises in China.
SEKO’s president and CEO James T Gagne stated: “Air-City will give us immediate depth in the growing westbound airfreight and cross-border ecommerce trade for goods going to China… [It] also gives us strategic airfreight volumes and expertise into China as the rising demand for US goods increases along with a rising middle class in China. We have also added strength to our US import services with the all-important ‘Section 321’ and Type 86 entries for e-commerce capabilities that are so critical for cross-border ecommerce into the United States as well as a network of bonded warehouses in the United States.”
Air-City’s executive vice-president, Chris Zheng, added: “Our cultures are so aligned with the speed of ecommerce, growth of cross-border ecommerce expertise, focus on seamless technology and growing freight management capabilities. We are excited about our next phase of growth and the additional benefits we can deliver for our clients in Asia and the United States as part of the SEKO organization.”
Dogs in hold on hold at British Airways
Following a recent incident at London Heathrow where a dog was discovered in a cage that was too small, British Airways has decided to temporarily suspend new bookings to ship dogs in the cargo hold. Though no harm was caused to the dog despite travelling in a cage too small for its size, the temporary suspension will run for the duration of the investigation into why this happened.
Existing pet bookings will be honored, however. The temporary suspension only applies to new dog bookings. All other animal transports are not affected.
IAG (International Airlines Group) Cargo who are responsible for making canine bookings, stated: “All our standards for travel are set by IATA’s live animal regulations, which include crate sizes based on the size of the animal,” and pointed out that it is the responsibility of the pet’s owner or person in charge of the booking, not the airline, to ensure that right sized cage for the animal. A British Airways spokesperson underlined: “We take the responsibility of transporting and caring for animals travelling with us extremely seriously.”
eCommerce is driving unmanned cargo delivery developments
At the CES 2020, Embraer’s disruptive business subsidiary, EmbraerX, announced that it is expanding into the commercial air cargo market together with Elroy Air. The two companies have signed a collaboration agreement to work on solutions for the worldwide unmanned air cargo market. Antonio Campello, President & CEO of EmbraerX, explained: “Booming eCommerce is forcing the cargo market to grow and seek new solutions, creating a distinct need for more flexibility. Our holistic approach to accelerating this market will include working with Elroy Air and its Chaparral system, capable of delivering cargo (250-500 lbs) over distances up to 300 miles, as well as our work in associated services and air traffic management solutions.”
Dave Merrill, CEO of Elroy Air, added “Elroy Air aims to open a new chapter for the logistics market with point-to-point autonomous aerial cargo systems… [Its] Vertical Takeoff and Landing
(VTOL) cargo delivery aircraft, the Chaparral, will operate without airports or charging stations, and is optimized for freight with automated cargo loading and unloading. Our collaboration with
EmbraerX will accelerate our path to deployment in commercial freight markets.”
Elroy Air’s innovative solutions are an excellent match for Embraer’s 50-year industry experience and complement EmbraerX’s strategy to develop an air mobility ecosystem, creating the conditions for people and goods to move from A to B in a seamless and affordable way.
Atlas Air and EL AL Israel Airlines ink freighter agreement
On 07JAN20, Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings, Inc. revealed that Atlas Air, Inc. and EL AL Israel Airline Ltd. have signed an ACMI (aircraft, crew, maintenance, and insurance) agreement wherein Atlas Air will operate a Boeing 747-400 Freighter for capacity on key routes, particularly between Liege – Tel Aviv, from January 2020 on. John Dietrich, Atlas Air Worldwide’s President and Chief Executive Officer, commented: “We welcome EL AL as a new customer and look forward to supporting EL AL as it continues to capture market opportunities and enhance its position as a leader in Israel’s cargo industry”. EL AL’s Cargo Division Head, Ronen Spira, added: “We are committed to providing our customers with a variety of cargo solutions. This strategic initiative with Atlas Air enables us to provide our customers with a stable and high-quality operation for all types of cargo. Atlas Air’s fleet of 747 aircraft is well-suited to support EL AL’s operations and schedules.”
Fraport lowers CO2 emissions even further
Frankfurt Airport has, for the eleventh consecutive time, received a climate certification from the Airport Council International (ACI), acknowledging its steps to continuously reduce greenhouse gas emissions over the last decade. Launched by the Airport Carbon Accreditation (ACA) program, independent experts assess how successful ACI airports are in lowering their carbon footprint. The scheme comprises four climate certification levels for airports: Mapping, Reduction, Optimization, and Neutrality. For 2020, Fraport again achieved the "Optimization" level for Rhine-Main Airport. Compared to 2001, FRA cut its CO2 emissions by more than 40% – the equivalent of some 127,000 metric tons.
In 2018, Frankfurt Airport's carbon footprint amounted to 188,631 metric tons of CO2. The 2019 figure is not yet available, but it is forecast to be at around 175,000 metric tons.
Until 2030, FRA's management intends to cut CO2 emissions at Frankfurt Airport to 80,000 metric tons a year. The company is striving to fully reduce emissions and be CO2-free by 2050.
By mid-2020, a new large-scale photovoltaic system will be implemented on top of a cargo terminal at the airport's CargoCity South. In addition, CO2-emitting apron vehicles, forklifts or high-loaders will be replaced by zero-emission alternatives, Fraport announced. The operator also intends to invest in wind and solar energy. The objective is to cover the daily operation of the vehicle fleet and the entire facilities from renewable energy sources.
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