Etihad boosts freighter services to Africa

Tourism Australia and Etihad Airways sign five-year deal to boost tourism.

By Staff Report

Published: Tue 23 Jun 2015, 11:46 PM

Last updated: Wed 8 Jul 2015, 2:46 PM

Abu Dhabi: Etihad Cargo has increased its freighter services to Africa with the launch of a cargo-only service from Abu Dhabi to Maya Maya Airport, Brazzaville, in the Republic of Congo.

Operating twice weekly using a Boeing 777F freighter aircraft, the new service will fly from Abu Dhabi to Brazzaville via Lagos airport in Nigeria. The freighter has a capacity of 100 metric tonnes and will transports tools, machinery, general cargo, electronics and project equipment. Brazzaville is the Republic of Congo’s capital and largest city, and a key political, economic and transportation hub in Central Africa.

Kevin Knight, chief strategy and planning officer at Etihad Airways, said: “Our new freighter service will allow us to capitalise on trade between the Republic and the UAE, and better connect Africa with markets in Europe, the Middle East and Asia”

Etihad Cargo flies directly from Abu Dhabi to eight destinations in Africa, and this is extended to over 30 destinations across the continent through codeshare partnerships with Royal Air Maroc, Kenya Airways, South African Airways and Air Seychelles.

Etihad Cargo has consistently outperformed the global market during the last year with 17 per cent growth in freight tonne kilometres in 2014, over four times the industry average. Etihad Cargo is one of the largest cargo operators in the world and is continuing to forecast significant growth during 2015, driven by key initiatives to expand its capacity and scope, and to leverage equity and other partnerships.

Meanwhile, Tourism Australia and Etihad Airways have deepened their commercial partnership by signing a five-year, A$30 million marketing deal to promote Australia to leisure and business travellers in key overseas markets.

The new ‘Memorandum of Understanding’ (MoU) signed on Monday at the Australian Tourism Exchange in Melbourne — extends an existing three-year deal worth A$12 million which expires this year. Tourism Australia managing director, John O’Sullivan, said the new deal highlighted Etihad Airways’ commitment to the Australian market.

“This is a landmark agreement which will provide valuable support for Tourism Australia’s global campaigns and marketing activities, as well as some of the industry’s most important trade and business events.”

Etihad Airways president and chief executive officer James Hogan said: “Today’s announcement of a further A$30 million over five years to promote Australia overseas reinforces Etihad Airways’ commitment to the Australian market.”

He said Etihad Airways and its partner airlines — notably airberlin, Alitalia, Air Serbia, Air France/KLM and Virgin Australia — offer a combined network of more than 180 cities throughout Europe and Australia, positioning us as enablers of sustainable tourism growth, and offering consumers greater choice and better connectivity.

“Together we add real muscle to Tourism Australia’s efforts to promote tourism from overseas and enable visitors to see more of Australia while here,” he said.

The primary focus of the deal will be promoting Australia to international leisure and business travellers within Europe.

More news from Aviation