Boeing B747-400ERF Jumbo cargo aircraft to connect Vienna with Asia
Austrian Cargo and Jade Cargo International are setting a new standard in the expansion of Vienna as a cargo hub for Central and Eastern Europe. in a first step, the Chinese all-cargo carrier based in Shenzhen will begin flying the Seoul-Shanghai-Vienna-Frankfurt-Seoul route twice a week with immediate effect. A Boeing B747-400ERF (Extended Range Freighter) aircraft, currently the most modern and economical aircraft in the jumbo family, will be deployed on the route. With a maximum takeoff weight of 413,000 kg and equipped with a state-of-the-art ‘nose-cargo door’, the aircraft can transport a payload of around 120 tons over 9,200 kilometers.
Austrian Cargo will contribute to the partnership with Jade Cargo its highly developed route network in Central and Eastern Europe and also its cargo specialists, who have years of sales experience in the respective markets. As a result, Jade clients in Korea and China will be able to access all the 45 destinations that make up the dense East European network of the Austrian Airlines Group. The cooperation will also serve to increase the intercontinental product range of Austrian Cargo in Central and Eastern Europe, connecting it directly to a number of important centres of population and economic activity in East Asia.
Franz Zoechbauer, Executive Vice President Cargo at Austrian Airlines, said the following on the occasion of the official opening ceremony in Vienna: ‘Notwithstanding the current global economic situation, Asia ’ and China in particular ’ remain the most important air freight markets of the future. We are also convinced that the trend in Central and Eastern Europe is set to improve exponentially in the medium to long term. Our cooperation with Jade Cargo is fully consistent with our strategy of connecting these markets with one another via our Vienna hub.’
Reto Hunziker, Executive Vice President Sales & Marketing, Jade Cargo International, said: ‘Our goal is to develop Vienna into a ‘sub-hub’ in our network. Thanks to its geographical position, the infrastructure available and now also the cooperation with Austrian Cargo, the conditions are perfect for opening up the Central and East European region to our clients. We have now taken the first step towards achieving this by launching services from Seoul and Shanghai, and we are already planning our next move: we want to connect other points in China with Vienna as early as this summer. The preparatory work for this stage of the project is already well underway.’
The route network of Austrian Cargo currently takes in more than 120 destinations worldwide. 45 of these destinations are located in the countries of Central and Eastern Europe, making Austrian the market leader in the region.
Jade Cargo International Company Ltd. was founded in October 2004 as a joint venture between Shenzhen Airlines (51%), Lufthansa Cargo AG (25%) and DEG-Deutsche Investitions- und Entwicklungsgesellschaft mbH (24%). The company is based in Shenzhen, a rapidly growing industrial center in the Pearl River Delta of Guangdong Province.
Jade Cargo International began operating in August 2006, and currently uses a fleet of 6 Boeing 747-400ERF aircraft.