China Airlines has become the 10th member of SkyTeam Cargo Alliance. James Yu of China Airlines and Tony Charaf of Delta Air Lines, one of the founding members of SkyTeam Cargo, signed an agreement at the TIACA Air Cargo Forum welcoming the Asian carrier into the fold. While China Airlines joined the alliance on the passenger side last September, the carrier has only now joined the cargo team.
China Airlines brings with it 84 weekly freighter flights to 32 destinations. With the carrier’s addition, the global cargo alliance now covers more than 860 destinations.
According to Chong Choy of partner Air France-KLM, this new addition is in line with the alliance’s growth plans, but doesn’t make the organization too big for its own good. During the press conference, he talked about wanting to be somewhere in the middle of the pack among the three major alliances — oneworld, SkyTeam and Star Alliance. oneworld currently boasts 12 members, while Star Alliance currently has 27 airlines in its membership.
“Do we want to be bigger than Star Alliance? No,” Choy said during the press conference.
James Yu, senior vice president of China Airlines, said becoming a member of the cargo organization is integral to the airline’s development. Joint marketing efforts, common warehouse handling and the exchange of business knowledge are a few of the organizational benefits that will help strengthen China Airlines’ cargo brand, he said.
“To welcome this new epoch in China Airlines’ history, we pledge to work closely with our partners for the bright future of SkyTeam Cargo,” he said. “We are extremely proud to be a member of SkyTeam Cargo and will do our best to make SkyTeam Cargo proud of China Airlines.”