In this week’s global wrap, we look back at week 24 to see the latest developments in the air cargo and wider aviation industry, including the recent step taken by the EU and US to preserve a level playing field between its main aircraft manufacturers. We also feature Worldwide Flight Services’ operations centre at CDG to monitor cargo handling in EMEAA, as well as American Airlines and Finnair Cargo as they go online on CargoAi and cargo.one. We round up this week’s wrap with B2B updates from the likes of LATAM, FedEx, Cargo IQ and Vallair.
EU and US take decisive step to end Boeing-Airbus dispute
The European Commission and US have reached an understanding relating to Boeing and Airbus, transforming almost 17 years of disputes into a forward-looking, collaborative platform to address bilateral issues and global challenges. Both sides will now seek to overcome long-standing differences to avoid future litigation and preserve a level playing field between aircraft manufacturers. The two sides have also agreed to suspend application of harmful tariffs worth US$11.5 billion for a period of five years.
American Airlines becomes first US carrier on cargo.one
American Airlines and cargo.one have entered into a strategic partnership expanding the airline’s cargo capacity offering to cargo.one’s leading e-booking platform for air cargo. The partnership will first cover Europe, followed by global expansion, allowing freight forwarders to access American’s cargo capacity in real-time and book with instant confirmation.
dnata opens new bus maintenance facility at DXB
dnata has opened an advanced maintenance facility at Dubai International Airport (DXB) to sfocus on the maintenance of airside passenger buses. The 5,000-sqm workshop is equipped with new equipment and technology to ensure continuous improvements in the safe and productive maintenance of the DXB bus fleet.
LATAM Cargo, Unilode extend partnership
LATAM Cargo and Unilode have extended their ULD management partnership to 7 more years until 2028, after signing the initial deal in 2016. As part of the newly extended agreement, Unilode will open a new ULD repair shop in São Paulo, Brazil, by January 2022, and provide digital services and sensory data to LATAM Cargo and its customers.
WFS opens security operations centre to monitor EMEAA stations
Worldwide Flight Services (WFS) has invested in a new security operations centre at Paris CDG to allow centralised 24/7 monitoring of its cargo handling operations in EMEAA. The centre will start operations this month and will be the security focal point for over 40 cargo handling sites in 12 countries in the region, with a dedicated team of security personnel monitoring over 1,900 CCTV cameras and 60 digital video recorders.
Cargologic completes SaaS migration with CHAMP
Swiss ground handler Cargologic has upgraded to CHAMP’s Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) version of its cargo management solution, Cargospot Handling. Through the new agreement, Cargologic will transitioning its current system to a fully managed service hosted from CHAMP’s state-of-the-art data centers.
Avianor, LATAM Cargo team up on B767 cargo modifications
Avianor and LATAM Cargo have completed and certified temporary cargo modifications on three Boeing 767s. LATAM will operate these aircraft with Avianor’s Transport Canada Civil Aviation (TCCA) supplemental type certificate while it gets validated by the FAA. Aircraft were modified at the beginning of 2021 at LATAM’s Santiago facilities, with Avianor providing the materials and work instructions completed with an official virtual walk through to confirm STC compliancy.
FedEx tests autonomous vehicles to advance last mile
FedEx Corp and Nuro have agreed to test autonomous delivery vehicles within the integrator’s operations, starting with a pilot programme in April in Houston. The pilot marks Nuro’s expansion into parcel logistics and allows FedEx the opportunity to explore various use cases for on-road autonomous vehicle logistics, including multistop and appointment-based deliveries.
Aviation leaders charter relief aid to India
Aircraft leasing and charter provider Sky One FZE, together with nonprofit Another Joy Foundation, is taking the full cost of routing a B747-400 freighter via India, which will deliver oxygen concentrators, masks and isolation gowns from California’s San Bernardino Airport. The 50-tonne shipment, valued at US$2.5 million, arrived in New Delhi last week, thanks to the coordinated efforts of Boeing, FedEx, Regional One, JetTest, UNICAL, Ascent MRO and San Bernardino Airport.
IAI’s BlueBird Aero Systems delivers 100 drones
BlueBird Aero Systems, partly owned by Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), completed the delivery of 100 WanderB-VTOL unmanned aerial vehicles to a European customer. The delivert is part of a transaction involving over 150 WanderB-VTOL and ThunderB-VTOL UAVs worth tens of millions of dollars. This is the world’s largest number of VTOL UAVs delivered to any customer at one time, and was completed within the agreed timetable despite Covid-19 conditions.
CargoAir completes first flight of AEI B737-800SF
CargoAir has successfully completed its first ferry flight of the AEI B737-800SF freighter. The aircraft (MSN 30664) is now registered as LZ-CGA under the Bulgarian Civil Aviation Administration. This is the first B737-800SF freighter for CargoAir and will be flown to support a large European integrator through an upgraded existing route out of Cologne, Germany.
Finnair Cargo goes live on CargoAi
Finnair Cargo, the largest air cargo carrier in the Nordic and Baltic region and an early adopter of digitalisaion, has chosen CargoAi to e-market its worldwide offering. From its modern air cargo terminal in Helsinki, the airlines covers 19 major cities in Asia, eight in North and Central America, and over 100 in Europe.
Vallair leases Europe’s first A321F to SmartLynx Malta
Vallair has delivered its second A321P2F conversion to SmartLynx Malta. Received its STC from the FAA in April 2021, the aircraft bearing MSN 891 was prepared for delivery at Vallair’s Montpellier facility following its conversion in the US. SmartLynx Malta will now operate the aircraft on behalf of DHL, becoming the first ever A321P2F to be operated by a European carrier.
Cargo IQ elects two new board members
Air cargo interest group Cargo iQ has appointed two new board members and re-elected its existing chair and vice chair for a further two-year term. Fedor Novikov of Volga-Dnepr Group, and Clark Fritzsch from Hellmann were welcomed during Cargo IQ’s Working Group where it announced this year’s objectives. These include achieving 100 percent reporting, engaging with small and medium-sized forwarders and enhancing its service delivery support functionality in addition to post-event reporting.