Cathay, Lufthansa join forces in new cargo agreement
Cathay and Lufthansa plan to transport the first shipments under the cooperation framework from early next year – initially from Hong Kong to Europe - followed by eastbound shipments from Europe to Hong Kong in the course of the year.
May 12, 2016
By PLA Editor
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Cathay Pacific Cargo and Lufthansa Cargo have signed a far reaching cargo cooperation agreement to provide customers with a larger and faster joint network on routes between Hong Kong and Europe from early next year.
Describing the agreement as a “highly integrated” bilateral cooperation, the two carriers said they will work closely together on network planning, as well as sales, IT and ground handling. “This will bring Hong Kong, the world’s busiest air cargo hub, closer to Europe, strengthening one of the world’s great trade lanes,” the duo said.
Aside from the benefits of more direct connections, greater flexibility and time savings, the cooperation will also focus on service enhancements, with customers being able to access the entire joint network via the booking systems of both partners, for example. Joint handling, initially at the Hong Kong and Frankfurt hubs, will also make things easier for customers since there is just one point for export drop off and import delivery.
Both partners plan to transport the first shipments under the cooperation framework from early next year – initially from Hong Kong to Europe. The ability to also book eastbound shipments from Europe to Hong Kong will then follow in the course of the year.
Speaking at the signing ceremony in Frankfurt today, Simon Large, director cargo at Cathay Pacific said: “Our joint network will cover more than 140 direct flights per week between Hong Kong and 13 European destinations.
“Cathay Pacific’s large number of direct connections to multiple European destinations fits perfectly with Lufthansa’s strength in Frankfurt, the most important European air freight hub, and in Europe through its dense feeder-network.”
Noting the efficiency gains for customers, Peter Gerber, CEO and chairman of the Executive Board of Lufthansa Cargo said: “By joining forces, customers gain access to unique flexibility with more flights to choose from and a combination of feeder and direct flights. In this way their cargo can reach its destination hours earlier. We will also have more options for shipments which have to be transported by freighter due to their size or properties.”
The joint activities will be carried out in full compliance with all applicable laws, including the competition rules of the European Union and Hong Kong, the two carriers added.
This latest tie-up follows Lufthansa’s agreement with United Airlines to partner on routes between the US and Europe late last year, and a slightly earlier joint venture with All Nippon Airways (ANA) on routes between Europe and Japan.