Etihad Cargo, part of the UAE carrier Etihad Airways, has posted monthly uplift figures of 45,000 tonnes for July this year, up 37 per cent from last year.
The tonnage figures in July were largely driven by increases in key export markets such as India, Hong Kong and China along with rising demand for foodstuff before the Ramadan season.
Etihad acquired Abu Dhabi Cargo Company in May this year along with Abu Dhabi Airport Services and Abu Dhabi In-flight Catering, in order to raise revenue opportunities and save costs.
“Over the past 12 months we’ve strengthened our global cargo business, expanded operations across new and existing trade lanes, seen demand continue to grow, and in response, we’ve been able to add greater capacity via our growing passenger and freighter fleet,” said Kevin Knight, chief strategy and planning officer at Etihad Airways.
Knight said that planning has also been underway to develop the East Midfield site for a new integrated cargo terminal in order to meet future demand for cargo at Abu Dhabi.
“The recent arrival of Etihad Cargo partner carriers into Abu Dhabi, where Etihad provides and receives complementary network feeds, also cements the importance of Abu Dhabi as key point of integration and partnership in global cargo networks.”
Etihad Cargo’s freighters include three Boeing B777F, three Airbus A330-200F, three Boeing 747 planes and an Airbus A330-200F scheduled to arrive in spring 2014.
The average age of Etihad Cargo’s fleet is now 3.3 years, and 1.3 years for Etihad Cargo’s six owned freighters. The airline’s three Boeing 747 freighters are leased from Atlas Air and KLM respectively.