LAN Cargo S.A., cargo subsidiary of LAN Airlines S.A., announced that the creation of a new cargo affiliate airline in Colombia was authorized by local aviation authorities. The endorsement of LAN Cargo’s project by the Colombian authorities enables the new affiliate to initiate the operational and technical certification process. LAN CARGO estimates this process could take approximately six months to complete, which means the new Colombian carrier should be able to launch operations during the first quarter 2009.
Colombia is currently the largest air cargo market in Latin America in terms of exports to the United States, with an estimated volume of 200 thousand tons annually. Once launched, the affiliate company in Colombia will significantly contribute to the development of this important market, providing connectivity to the United States and Latin America with a modern fleet of Boeing 767-300F freighter aircraft. LAN Cargo will also be enhancing its fleet with the arrival of two new Boeing B777 freighter aircraft during the first quarter 2009.
The Colombian affiliate, which will be managed by a team of Colombian executives and technical professionals, will seek to provide excellent service to exporters and importers. The new Colombian venture will have access to LAN Cargo and its affiliates’ broad network of routes within the region. ‘We are very pleased to continue with the consolidation of our cargo network, connecting the region’s main productive centers and markets, while reaffirming LAN Cargo’s objective of uniting Latin America with the rest of the world,’ stated Cristian Ureta, Chief Executive Officer of LAN Cargo.