Thursday, October 11, 2018

Cargo Group and Airport Sign Long Term Deal to Boost Freight Throughput

Belgian Hub Aims for Top Five Spot Within Two Years
Shipping News Feature
BELGIUM – Liege Airport and AirBridgeCargo Airlines (ABC) have signed an historic 10-year lease agreement which will aim to bring the scale of cooperation between two companies to the next level of development, boosting the air freight volumes of ABC to and from the airport and with the hopes of placing Liege Airport among the top 5 cargo airports in Europe by 2020.

The agreement comes as a result of the Memorandum of Understanding signed between Liege Airport and Volga-Dnepr Group earlier this year during the Farnborough International Airshow 2018, and will aim to contribute to the development of the regional economy in general, creating numerous amounts of jobs and favouring growth of air cargo sector, and the airport development in particular, heating up cargo infrastructure and freight flows to/from the airport. Luc Partoune, CEO of Liege Airport, commented:

“We welcomed the first flights in October 2017 because AirBridgeCargo had to reduce its presence in Amsterdam. Then we responded to their call for tenders launched earlier this year for the creation of their European hub. They liked the cargo DNA of Liege Airport. We had strong political support at both the federal and regional levels. AirBridgeCargo sees opportunities for expansion, can count on a quality workforce and rely on efficient Belgian customs. Thanks to AirBridgeCargo, we plan to reach one million metric tonnes by 2020 and become one of the top 5 cargo airports in Europe.”

Under new agreement AirBridgeCargo will lease warehouse premises for a total area of 25,000 square metres to aim at effective and seamless cargo operations in the airport. The investment amounts to €25 million and includes 2,000 square metres of office space to ensure smooth daily flight management. Sergey Lazarev, General Director of AirBridgeCargo, said:

“It's been a year since we have been operating to Liege and we are delighted to see that our partnership is reaching a new height. This step is another milestone which goes in line with the development of strategic cooperation between Liege airport and Volga-Dnepr Group, which signed MoU during FIA2018.

”With the lease of dedicated warehouse facilities for the next 10 years and ABC’s intention to increase the number of weekly flights to Liege up to 30 within the next 1.5 years, AirBridgeCargo will be able to leverage growing market demand for special cargoes, especially e-commerce shipments. An agreement of this size comes with a number of benefits not only for ABC but also for our customers, who will get more frequency options and high level of service quality.”

Photo: (L to R) Sergey Lazarev, General Director of AirBridgeCargo with Luc Partoune, CEO of Liege Airport.