Big growth, big quality focus for Qatar Cargo

Keeping track of Qatar Airways Cargo’s network growth is a challenge and one that seems to suggest a contrarian strategy. With steady capacity growth and dizzying network expansion the Doha-based carrier has quickly moved into the ranks of the top five global cargo airlines, even as many more in the industry continue to shed main deck capacity and struggle with yields. Donald Urquhart has the story.

Big growth big quality focus for Qatar Cargo

The latest expansion saw a new twice-weekly B777 Freighter service to Los Angeles initiated from 4 April, becoming the carrier’s fourth US freighter destination alongside Houston, Chicago and Atlanta. The new addition will provide 100 tonnes of cargo capacity per flight, departing Doha via Luxembourg and Mexico to Los Angeles International Airport. This comes on top of recent new routes to Hyderabad, Stansted, Mexico, Shanghai, Gaungzhou, Brussels and Accra, to name only a few.

With 47 current maindeck destinations and another 146 passenger destinations where freight is also moved, Qatar Airways chief officer cargo, Ulrich Ogiermann explained: “It’s really on all parts the world that we are trying to roll out and obviously there’s cooperation and ordination with the passenger people.

“We’ve had frequency increases on many routes where we have simply a better schedule for us and we can make more use of the increased belly capacity.

What’s really on all sides is that we are expanding rapidly, we’ve had very strong growth over the last couple of years and are now amongst the top five cargo operators worldwide.”

Foundations for growth

There are a number of factors for the cargo division’s growth – both focused strategy and serendipitous factors – that have clearly helped Qatar’s meteoric rise amongst the ranks of the world’s cargo carriers. A near single-mindedness to build a quality product and importantly, a strategy that is backed up by investment in modern aircraft, IT systems, hub infrastructure and also people.