Friday, September 21, 2012

African Cargo Carrier Opts for another Boeing Freighter

Ethiopian Airlines Takes Delivery of First 777F on the Continent
Shipping News Feature

AFRICA – Ethiopia is not the first name one might associate with innovation with regard to air transport but Ethiopian Airlines was the first air carrier in the world outside of Japan to operate the 787 Dreamliner and the first African airline to operate the 777-200LR in 2010 and yesterday the company received from Boeing the first 777 Freighter to be operated by an African carrier. The new plane is an addition to an all Boeing fleet and the cargo aircraft can carry 102 tonnes of freight up to a range approaching 5,000 miles.

Ethiopian Airlines are leasing the plane from GECAS and it will be added to the cargo fleet that already serves Europe, the Middle East, and Asia and company CEO, Tewolde GebreMariam, commented:

"This delivery marks another special day for Ethiopian Airlines and all of Ethiopia. We are not only becoming the first African carrier operating Boeing's 777 Freighter, today we are also taking our cargo operations to a new level and into a new era. As the largest African cargo carrier operating in some of the fastest growing trade lanes of the world the new 777 Freighter fleet will significantly enhance our tonnage and range capabilities."

The 777 Freighter, the world's longest-range twin-engine freighter, is based on the technologically advanced 777-200LR (Longer Range) passenger airplane and can fly 4,900 nautical miles (9,070 kilometres) with a full payload and its high-cargo density and 10-foot (3.1-meter) interior height capability provides a cargo capacity normally associated with larger airplanes. Van Rex Gallard, Boeing’s Sales VP for Africa, Latin America, & Caribbean for Commercial airplanes said:

"We are proud to deliver another first in African aviation to Ethiopian Airlines as they continue to show the world they are a leader in aviation. The proven operational and economical efficiency of the 777F will reposition Ethiopian Cargo in a stronger place to continue winning in this hyper competitive market."