The airline will expand its network of cargo destinations on scheduled and charter flights in the region. Etihad is currently developing new destinations in Europe, Africa and Asia.
Commenting on the news, H. E. Dr. Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saif Al Nahyan, Chairman of Civil Aviation Department in Abu Dhabi and Chairman of Etihad Airways said “The second regional freighter will enhance our capacity for charter services, responding directly to our customers’ needs. Abu Dhabi is an ideal geo-strategic hub connecting East and West, for both passenger and freighter services. This expansion of Crystal Cargo services supports and reinforces Etihad’s strategy to position Abu Dhabi as the regional link for cargo and passenger services between the Middle East, Asia, Europe and North America.”
In January Etihad Crystal Cargo took delivery of its first Airbus A300-600 regional freighter, and is now further extending operations by upgrading its services with the addition of this new freighter. The second regional freighter, an Airbus A310-300F, has a payload of 38,5 tons and will operate on new routes including Milan, Addis Ababa, Khartoum, Almaty and New Delhi on both scheduled and charter flights.
“Despite market volatility and increasing fuel prices there is a growing demand for freighter services, particularly in the UAE where we are ideally positioned at the global crossroads,” added H.E. Dr. Sheikh Ahmed Bin Seif Al Nahyan. “Our investment in expanding Crystal Cargo service is a clear indication of the airline’s confidence in the global business prospects.”
In 2004, the first full year of operation, Etihad Crystal Cargo moved almost 20.000 tons of cargo. The cargo production target for 2005 is in excess of 100.000 tons. By the end of 2006 Etihad Crystal Cargo plans to add four new regional freighter aircraft to its fleet.
Tuesday, May 3- 2005 @ 16:47 UAE local time (GMT+4) Replication or redistribution in whole or in part is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Mediaquest FZ LLC.