CHINA SOUTHERN WILL EXPAND FREIGHTER OPERATIONS
China Southern Airlines, China's largest airline, will build a cargo center at Shenzhen's new international airport to support expansion of its fledgling freighter operations.
The carrier, which started B747 freighter service to Chicago in April, said it plans to acquire via long-term contracts more freighter aircraft. China Southern wet-leases a B747-400 from Atlas Air on a short-term basis. The carrier plans to launch three B747-400 freighters from Shenzhen to the United States, Japan and Europe in the next two years.
“China Southern Airlines’ new Shenzhen Cargo Center will serve as a major freight hub, distributing cargo collected from throughout China to the United States and other international markets,” said Mr. Yan Zhi Qing, China Southern's president.
The 25,000-square-meter Shenzhen facility is scheduled to open in 2001 and will be managed by China Southern.
The carrier has operated more than 40 freighter flights to the United States since April, carrying 3,775 tons of cargo. The load factor of every outbound flight has been near 100 percent, the company said.