Embraer signed a letter of agreement (LoA) with Lanzhou Aviation Industry Development Group for 20 E190F and E195F E-Jets passenger-to-freighter conversions (P2F) at the 54th Paris Air Show.

Embraer and Lanzhou intend to cooperate on establishing E190F and E195F conversion capability in Lanzhou, China, which will support and accelerate the introduction of E-Jet first generation freighters to the Chinese market, says a release from Embraer. "The cooperation will serve as an initial starting point for both companies to leverage their strengths, jointly promote the development of Lanzhou’s air transportation industry, and boost the economy around the airport."

Lanzhou Group becomes the launch customer for Embraer’s P2F conversion in China, and the base in China for Embraer’s P2F conversions, the release added.

“The opportunity in China had a significant influence during the decision-making process of the launch of our P2F programme," says Arjan Meijer, President and CEO, Embraer Commercial Aviation. "It is a market with increasing demand for cargo aircraft to accommodate the tremendous growth of e-commerce trade and the consequent evolution of the logistics industry. We’re confident in this booming market and always willing to support the sector’s further progress in cooperation with our Chinese partners. We welcome Lanzhou Group to be the region’s launch customer for Embraer’s P2F conversion, and we expect to bring new vitality to the Chinese market with our E-Jets freighters.”

Johann Bordais, President & CEO, Embraer Services and Support adds: “The LoA signed with Lanzhou Group is a strong indicator of the demand we are seeing for our E-Jet freight conversions in China.It's great to welcome Lanzhou to join our E-Jets freighter family. We’re glad to help them integrate into the E190/E195 conversion network and speed up our P2F efforts in China so that more Embraer freighters can be delivered to our Chinese customers in the future.”

Embraer launched the E190F and E195F P2F conversions programme in March 2022, supporting the high demand for cargo and positive market trends in China, the release added. Embraer forecasts a market demand for 600 E-Jet freighters over the next 20 years. The Chinese market is forecast to need 240 freighters of this size, accounting for 34 percent of global demand, powered by e-commerce and logistics sectors.

“We are honoured to be the launch customer of the Embraer E-Jets freighters in China," says Chen Zhiqiang, President, Lanzhou Aviation Industry Development Group. "We believe the China speed in aviation logistics will be an important basis for the sustainable and efficient growth of the Chinese economy. By cooperating with industry-leading aircraft manufacturer Embraer and introducing E-Jets freighters to China, we’ll fully leverage our domestic strength and competitive advantages to boost China’s air cargo market growth. We expect that the project, after it comes to fruition, will also help achieve high-quality economic development in Lanzhou, Gansu, and western regions of China.”

Embraer’s E-Jets P2F conversions will have over 50 percent more volume capacity, three times the range of large cargo turboprops, and up to 30 percent lower operating costs than narrowbodies, the release said.

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