ATLAS AIR EXPANDS CHINESE PRESENCE WITH CHINA EASTERN CONTRACT
Atlas Air Inc., the Purchase, N.Y.-based company that charters 747 aircraft, crews, maintenance and insurance for airlines, has signed a contract with China Eastern Airlines, China's second-largest airline.
Under the ACMI contract, Atlas will provide a 747 freighter for China Cargo Airlines Ltd., the cargo arm of China Eastern.
China's airline regulatory body, the Civil Aviation Administration, is in the process of merging 10 carriers into three major airline groups, which will be led by China Eastern, China Southern and Air China. Atlas Air now has charter contracts with each of the top three. Atlas signed a contract with Air China in July and has provided freighter service between Shenzhen and Chicago since April for China Southern. The airline charterer also has a contract for a 747 freighter with Hong Kong Dragon Airlines.
“With the move to create greater efficiency within China's aviation industry through consolidation, the time is right to expand our cargo operations with additional dedicated freighter service,” said Zhou Liguo, president of China Cargo Airlines. “Atlas Air will provide us with an efficient and cost-effective way to tap into the growth potential of China's expanding cargo market.”