DB Schenker awarded “Excellence” by Lufthansa Cargo
Of the eleven top companies belonging to Lufthansa Cargo's Global Partnership Program, DB Schenker came out on top this year when it came to the “Excellence Award”, awarded annually since 2002, for exemplary cooperation. In DB Schenker’s case, this was for the joint growth in Europe and further key markets. The other players in the GPP initiative for sustainable growth, are Kuehne+Nagel, CEVA, Dachser, DHL Express, DHL Global Forwarding, DSV, Expeditors, Hellmann, Nippon Express and UPS. Together, the lucky eleven bring in around one third of Lufthansa Cargo's revenue.
Peter Gerber, CEO of Lufthansa Cargo AG, emphasized the special connection between the two companies both when it comes to standard cargo as well as special products: "Not only the economic development of Lufthansa Cargo and DB Schenker is pleasing, but also the fact that both companies managed to jointly push ahead with digitalization in the industry last year." Dorothea von Boxberg, Lufthansa Cargo’s CCO, added: "The cooperation between DB Schenker and Lufthansa Cargo in 2019 was marked by an outstanding partnership. We are proud that a large share of DB Schenker's air freight was flown with Lufthansa Cargo last year." Both LCAG Board Members presented the award to Jochen Thewes, Chief Executive Officer of Schenker AG, and Thorsten Meincke, Schenker AG Board Member for Air and Ocean Freight.
Jochen Thewes said: "For our global logistics network, we are building on the long and trusting partnership with Lufthansa Cargo, which, like us, has made excellence its benchmark. We would like to thank Lufthansa Cargo for this award and for what we achieved together last year." A message that was echoed by Thorsten Meincke: "We look forward to continuing to work constructively with Lufthansa Cargo on innovative solutions for airfreight. The Excellence Award is a recognition of the employees of both companies who give their best for their customers every day."
Qatar Airways continues its sustainable focus
Boasting fifth place in IATA’s global accreditation in its Environmental Assessment program, Qatar Airways is fixed on its sustainability course, which includes selecting the most efficient aircraft to suit the planned route. Qatar Airways has the world’s largest fleet of A350s, which it can prove as emitting 20-ton less CO2 per block hour than its A380s. To this end, it has decided to keep its 10 A380s on the ground – both for the environmental impact as well as an economic one (not enough passengers), and instead operate its 30 B787 and 49 A350s.
Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive, His Excellency Mr. Akbar Al Baker said: “Qatar Airways Group has a strong record of industry leadership on sustainable operations. We take our responsibilities to care for the environment seriously and sustainability is at the forefront of our business planning across the group, this is why we have an average fleet age of less than five years, one of the youngest in the world. […] As we rebuild our network, passengers can rely on us to operate an honest schedule of flights to take them where they want to go, using the right size aircraft to offer sensible capacity on each route. As a result, we will not resume flying our fleet of A380 until demand returns to appropriate levels. Having closely studied the environmental impact numbers, flying such a large aircraft with a low load factor does not meet our environmental responsibilities or make commercial sense. Our young fleet of Airbus A350 and Boeing 787 aircraft are a much better fit for current global demand.”
British Airways sends The Queen of the Skies into retirement
The beloved Jumbo Jet – around since almost 50 years and an iconic image against the sky, from the time it first took off for BOAC on 14APR71… Social Media is full of grief following British Airways’ statement saying it was retiring its entire Boeing 747 fleet “with immediate effect”. BA has the largest fleet of 747s, numbering 57 in its heyday and now 31 – roughly 10% of the world’s 747s still in service today – though many of those in service are freighters. BA’s initial plan was to retire its 747 fleet by 2024, but the COVID-19 crisis has catapulted this decision forward, given the downturn in passenger travel alongside the pressure for greater sustainability. BAB stated: “while the aircraft will always have a special place in our heart, as we head into the future we will be operating more flights on modern, fuel-efficient aircraft such as our new A350s and 787s, to help us achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.”
Alex Cruz, British Airways’ Chairman and CEO, said: “This is not how we wanted or expected to have to say goodbye to our incredible fleet of 747 aircraft. It is a heart-breaking decision to have to make. So many people, including many thousands of our colleagues past and present, have spent countless hours on and with these wonderful planes – they have been at the center of so many memories, including my very first long-haul flight. They will always hold a special place in our hearts at British Airways. We have committed to making our fleet more environmentally friendly as we look to reduce the size of our business to reflect the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on aviation. As painful as it is, this is the most logical thing for us to propose. The retirement of the jumbo jet will be felt by many people across Britain, as well as by all of us at British Airways. It is sadly another difficult but necessary step as we prepare for a very different future.”
The last scheduled BA 747 passenger service was from CPT-LHR on 03JUN20, operated by the 1997-delivered G-CIVO registration.
Applications are open for TIACA’s Director General position
On 15JUL20, TIACA published the position of Director General on its website, as the next step in its transformation strategy, and is accepting applications until 31AUG20, and the chosen candidate can expect to start on 01NOV20 – not necessarily based in Miami, USA, though they will spend much time there. In the interim, Céline Hourcade in her position as Transition Director, is leading the association.
The responsibilities the new Director General who will report to the TIACA board, will cover the financial and operational management of the Miami Head Office, the planning and execution of the new TIACA strategy, and successfully delivering TIACA's projects and programs. The required skills are proven, strong operational leadership, excellent team management and networking. "Once its transformation is complete, the new TIACA will be a more agile association, able to respond to industry needs. TIACA will need a strong and equally agile leader to raise its profile, expand and deliver the new agenda to increase member satisfaction," said Steven Polmans, TIACA's Chair. "I am confident, with the right person in charge, the association will be able to represent the interests of the whole air cargo community with strong industry programs, effective global and regional partnerships and expanded membership base."
IATA wants IEA to prioritize SAF investmen
Though over 250,000 flights have used Sustainable Aviation Fuel since 2016, more than 40 airlines have experience in SAF, and it has been certified as safe, sustainable and ready-to-use, IATA emphasizes that a greater focus on SAF production and more feasible pricing is needed, especially now in post-COVID-19 recovers. It therefore turns to the International Energy Agency (IEA), urging it to prioritize sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) investment, as this would go a long way to halving 2005’s emission levels by 2050. Compared to normal jet fuel, SAF are up to 80% less CO2 damaging. “The enormous amounts of money that governments are investing in the economic recovery from COVID-19 are an opportunity to create a legacy of energy transition for the aviation industry,” IATA Director General and CEO Alexandre de Juniac said. “To achieve this, governments, the finance community, and the fuel producers—both large and small—must work together with the goal of rapidly increasing production of affordable, sustainable aviation fuel.”
“As much as airlines want to use SAF, production is well below the scale needed for prices to fall to competitive levels,” de Juniac said, referring to the current SAF production levels which are at 50 million liters annually, but would need to upped to 7 billion liters to be able to compete with jet fuel prices. “Attaining the right price point is even more crucial as industry losses and debt levels rise. But if governments can use this unique time to combine a safe fiscal and regulatory framework supporting SAF production with the direct allocation of stimulus funds to SAF production, it is possible to reach the 2% tipping point in 2025. That would power greener flight, create jobs, and fuel the economic recovery together.”
A little late to the Preighter Party
Months after most non-U.S. airlines have already stripped seats from a number of passenger aircraft, converting them to temporary freighters (the first of these were back in APR20), the FAA finally authorized U.S. airlines to do the same on 10JUL20, more than 2 months after the initial request was placed. At the same time, the existing ruling regarding cargo flying on seats was extended to 10JUL21.
However, now that passenger flights are slowly starting up again, fuel prices are no longer as attractive as they were recently, and cargo rates are starting to normalize somewhat, the question is whether U.S. carriers will now go ahead. Especially since the exemption is valid for just one year instead of the two years U.S. airlines had requested, forecasting a slow recovery. In addition, instead of the 60m³ requested for the cabin, the FAA restricted this to 38m³ on the grounds that access to cargo was required in the event of a fire. A list of accompanying conditions include the stipulation to have at least 2 trained staff on board in case of fire, at least 4 fire extinguishers, and various other restrictions such as a 1.27m cargo height restriction.
Preighter flights are expensive to run, given the resource-intensive loading and unloading required – which cause longer turnarounds and flight delays, and the restrictions in weight and size of cargo that can be transported. COVID-19 medical supplies and PPE are ideal cargo, however, how much more of this is required is questionable, especially given that much is now moving to sea freight.
The ruling states: “The stability of the U.S. transportation infrastructure is particularly critical at this time because of the increased and immediate demand for medical supplies and other essential cargo prompted by the COVID-19 public health emergency.” Though the U.S. is still seeing rising numbers, this statement comes around 2 months too late to really be effective and worthwhile.
From Passenger to Cargo – MESA signs with DHL Express
From OCT20 onwards, Mesa Air, a Phoenix, Arizona, USA-based regional airline with a fleet of 145 aircraft and which flies passenger routes for American and United, will also start moving cargo for DHL Express. A five-year contract was signed 13JUL20, wherein two Boeing 737-400Fs will be leased from DHL for air cargo service and operated out of DHL Express America’s global hub at Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport.
“We are very excited to enter the cargo market and diversify our business. Flying under contract on behalf of DHL is essentially the same business model Mesa has operated under for over 20 years,” said Jonathan Ornstein, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “Cargo transport plays a critical role in the health of communities and economies around the world. Mesa is well-suited for this new mission, and this is just the beginning of what we believe will be a long and productive relationship with DHL.”
“This new cargo operation opens new doors for Mesa,” said Brad Rich, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer. “We are proud to offer new opportunities to our employees as we enter the cargo industry. In particular, Mesa pilots will now have the ability to earn a 737-type rating and receive the highest pay in the regional industry, all without leaving the company.”
“I’d like to thank all the people at Mesa, their counterparts at DHL and the FAA, who worked hard to bring this program to fruition,” said Captain Mike Ferverda, Senior Vice President of Regulatory Affairs, who is leading Mesa’s 737 certification process. “While much of the industry is challenged given the present COVID environment, we are pleased to expand our growth opportunities with this project.”
DHL and DL Invest jointly building huge Polish logistics center
On 13JUL20, a cooperation agreement was signed by DHL Supply Chain Polska and DHL Invest Group which will result in a jointly developed DHL Invest Park Psary logistics center, comprising state-of-the-art warehouses based on DHL’s GoGreen policy and totaling 200,000 m² in space, and located in the Silesia region with excellent connections to Southern and Western Europe. Two fully leased buildings (31,000 m²) already exist on the 40-hectare plot of land, with a third (24,000 m²) due to be finalized in SEP20 and a fourth (14,000 m²) in the fourth quarter of 2020. The remaining 130,000 m² of warehousing that will be tailored to the requirements of its tenants will be completed in subsequent phases and operational with 8-10 months of lease contracts being signed.
Wirginia Leszczyńska, COO of DL Invest Group is keen on the eco solutions that will be delivered by DHL and will help to keep operating costs down with energy-saving solutions: “We are determined to follow the path of sustained growth. Thermally insulated walls, a rainwater recovery and grey water recycling system, an eco-heating system – these are only a few of the solutions we use as our standard. We discerned that DHL’s declaration to reduce pollution emission levels is just reliable – it is confirmed by already completed projects that use renewable energy, energy-saving lights, purpose-designed rooftops, waste recycling and eco parcel packaging systems.”
Andries Retief, CEO of DHL Supply Chain for CEE region outlined the logistics expertise that the company will provide: “Our goal is to create comprehensive supply-chain solutions for our target clients, that ensure optimized costs and outstanding quality through the use of innovative solutions in warehousing. By combining our global experience in logistics and the expertise in property development of DL Invest Group, we will be able to offer premium and modern solutions to our clients.”
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