Most news is from North America
There is quite a lot of trade being generated by the US American aviation industry. The planned merger between American Airways and US Airways will continue to be in the news for some time to come. In addition, new transcontinental routes are being added to the US network.
Whilst American Airlines’ legal battle over its merger with US Airways is continuing to drag on – a plaint submitted by the Department of Justice will be brought before the court on 25 November (see also ITJ Daily of 15 August 2013) – its airfreight division American Airlines Cargo has joined the ever growing group of airlines that have signed up for the multilateral agreement for the introduction of electronic air waybills (e-AWBs).
«We’ve worked on this important matter for a long time behind the scenes now, and are thus all the happier to add our name to the Iata agreement,» said Kenji Hashimoto, American Airlines president in charge of cargo activities.
Almost at the same time Qatar Airways was added to the list of candidates for the enhanced paper-free shipment process at the beginning of September. The Middle Eastern carrier has also announced plans to fly daily to Chicago from April 2014, in addition to its twice-weekly full cargo connection to the Windy City.
Qatar Airways current flagship, a Boeing B777-300ER, with belly-hold cargo space for 44 ULDs, is deployed between Doha and the metropolis in the Mid-West of the United States. The airline’s first Airbus A380 left the Airbus plant in Toulouse and was delivered to the Middle Eastern carrier in Hamburg on 6 September.
The latest new destination served by Qatar Airways is Chengdu, since 3 September. The approval to serve the industrial city in western China from San Francisco was received by Chicago-based United Airlines just five days later from the US Department of Transport. The direct service with B787s from June next year should take around 14 hours – four hours less than traditional flights over a corresponding distance which require a stopover.
Transpacific and transatlantic
The further deepening of Sino-US relationships has been achieved by the aircraft alteration company Pemco World Air Services, which operates in both countries. On 9 September it announced the handing over of a second converted B737-300F to China’s CDI Cargo Airlines, as well as the alteration of five further B737s for China Postal Airlines. CPA is based in Beijing and already has ten aircraft altered by Pemco in its fleet. A further transatlantic connection has also been announced by the Middle Eastern carrier Emirates. From March 2014 Boston will become its eighth US destination served from Dubai (UAE). It currently serves Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle, Washington and New York (as well as from Milan from October), and wants to expand its US network to 15 destinations over the next five years.
A European newcomer was also added to the transatlantic routes recently in the form of Norwegian Air Shuttle. It initially connects Copenhagen (Denmark), Oslo (Norway) and Stockholm (Sweden) with Los Angeles, Oakland and Orlando.