The Week in brief
- Air China and Cathay Pacific Airways have consolidated their cargo businesses under the Air China Cargo banner. Cathay Pacific holds 25 percent of the shares and a 24 percent economic interest in the cargo business. Three Cathay Pacific executives and four executives from Air China make up the board of directors.
- Spanish carrier Iberia will launch a freighter service between Madrid and Brussels on June 1 with the aim of shipping perishables from South America to northern Europe with no break in the cool chain. The B737 service will be three times a week initially and will transport flowers, fruit and vegetables as part of Iberia’s specialist Cool&Fast service. Partners in the project are Spanish freight forwarder Cacesa, an Iberia subsidiary, and Belgium’s Adelantex, which can offer temperature-controlled road distribution across Europe.
- German forwarder Group7 hopes to get certification later this year for a multimodal CO2 calculator. Input a journey by air, by sea or a combination or both and, by assessing the efficiency of the vessel or aircraft type, the new tool will calculate the carbon footprint. Andre Windmöller, who developed the system as a postgraduate project, explained that for some shippers, environmental impact can now be as important as speed or price. On its stand at Air Cargo Europe, the company demonstrated the relative environmental impact of moving a 750kg shipment between Qingdao and Munich. By sea, the CO2 emissions are 584kg including the final road journey from Hamburg. A sea-air route via Dubai clocks up 1.88 tonnes. But an all-air journey, transhipping from a B737 to a B747-400 in Beijing, is claimed to result in 4.01 tonnes of emissions.
- In a recent press conference, Lufthansa Cargo CEO Karl Ulrich Garnadt told journalists that airfreight prices may rise in the fall if the global economy continues to improve. Still, he said, “At the moment, we are not seeing rising freight prices.” Garnadt also acknowledged that capacity remains limited, since sky-high fuel prices are preventing some older planes from operating. What’s more, Garnadt explained that his company’s 2011 numbers would be well below those from 2010 when profits soared by 310 million euros. “We would be satisfied even if profits fell 20 percent,” he stated.