Coronavirus: Cargolux expects to up China flights

Cargolux has 40 weekly scheduled flights to and from China, which represents 7.26% of its market share Edouard Olszewski

Cargolux has 40 weekly scheduled flights to and from China, which represents 7.26% of its market share Edouard Olszewski

In a press release issued on Friday evening, Cargolux said that the outbreak, combined with the Chinese New Year, had a “significant impact on demand for air freight out of China as many factories have not yet re-opened.”

As a result, Cargolux and Cargolux Italia reduced their frequencies into China to adjust to the market situation.

The virus, which causes pneumonia, started in the city of Wuhan, China, in December 2019. It spread rapidly from 20 January onwards as a result of people travelling home for Chinese New Year celebrations. According to World Health Organization figures for 16 February, almost 52,000 cases had been confirmed globally, of which 683 are outside of China. The virus had meanwhile killed 1,669 people.

The airline wrote on Friday: “We expect our service to China to increase in the coming weeks to accommodate the resumption of factory production. These flights will, however, be operated in accordance with recommendations from the WHO and other regulatory bodies as well as Cargolux’s own restrictions including no crew layovers in China.”

The airline anticipated a backlog of work to “replenish inventory levels and to provide required parts and materiel for manufacturers outside of China, e.g. the automobile industry. This situation could well result in a surge in demand for air freight capacity out of China when production recommences,” it wrote.

In January, Cargolux has introduced an embargo on the transport of live animals out of China, a country to and from which it has 40 weekly scheduled flights and which represents 7.26% of its market share.

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