March 18, 2020: Running March 29 to October 28, Etihad Cargo’s freighter schedule for the International Air Transport Association (IATA) summer season will boost capacity to its top gateways. The network will also be expanded to capacity-constrained markets that are wrestling with decreased passenger operations or temporary travel bans in light of the public health emergency caused by the novel Covid-19 (coronavirus), offering a strategic cargo lifeline and supporting the continuity of the global trade ecosystem.

In Europe, with two extra weekly freighter flights Amsterdam goes to five times weekly service, Milan moves to a twice-weekly turnaround freighter service, while Etihad Cargo will launch new freighter connections linking Abu Dhabi with Paris. The new freighter flights will depart Abu Dhabi International Airport for Paris Charles De Gaulle on Thursdays and Saturdays. The same day return services will add 200 tonnes of incremental weekly freight capacity between the UAE and the French capital. These services will be complemented by the increase in services into Johannesburg, South Africa and Nairobi, Kenya.

In Asia, the seasonal plan doubles Etihad Cargo’s Hong Kong services to four flights per week, while Hanoi gains a third-weekly service and Singapore a second-weekly flight. These additions complete the currently operated seasonal winter schedule across China, India, and Bangladesh.

North America remains a key market with Etihad Cargo’s twice-weekly freighter service to Rickenbacker in the United States, with stopovers on the inbound and outbound sectors offering key capacity between Europe and North America.

Abdulla Mohamed Shadid, managing director cargo and logistics at Etihad Aviation Group said, “With widespread commercial flight restrictions in numerous international markets, the air cargo environment is evolving daily. After consulting closely with local and international authorities, our optimised summer freighter schedule is designed to significantly boost capacity and service customers in key cargo markets.”

“The safety of our pilots, loadmasters and ground staff is our number one priority. During these times, additional stringent measures in line with advisories from the UAE Ministry of Health, Abu Dhabi Department of Health, the UAE GCAA and WHO have been implemented, to safeguard the health and wellbeing of our team and main the highest standards of hygiene throughout the operations,” Shadid added.

Recently, IATA urged governments to exclude air cargo operations from Covid-19-related restrictions for delivering time-sensitive shipments. Since the crisis began, air cargo has been a vital partner in keeping global supply chains functioning for the most time-sensitive materials. This has been done through dedicated cargo freighter operations, utilisation of cargo capacity in passenger aircraft and relief flights to affected areas.

Read Full Article