ANA and NCA agree "strategic business partnership" for cargo

01 / 03 / 2018

Japan's All Nippon Airways (ANA) and Nippon Cargo Airlines (NCA) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to build a strategic business partnership based on three key elements: code share, an expanded block space agreement and maintenance support.

This  new partnership between Japan's largest cargo carriers adds to a growing network of strategic partnerships already in place with other airlines, including Lufthansa Cargo, United Cargo, SIA Cargo and Cargolux.

A joint statement said that ANA and NCA plan to add code shares to each other’s flights within the first half of the fiscal year 2018, subject to regulatory approval.

"The codeshares will offer a broad network of flights and a wider range of choices to the partner’s customers, allowing seamless and convenient connections with outstanding Japan-quality service, and especially leveraging the synergy effect of ANA’s Boeing 767 operation to China and Asia, and NCA’s Boeing 747 freighter operation to North America and Europe.

"ANA’s plans to introduce Boeing 777 freighters will further increase the customer choice."

The two airlines plan to expand the existing interline and block space agreement, aiming to "effectively utilize each other’s cargo space and provide a reliable and convenient connection service".

The maintenance support agreement will see ANA allocate maintenance resources to support NCA’s operation. The agreement will "enable active sharing of knowledge and enhancement of the technical abilities of both carriers".

The statement concluded: "With this new partnership, ANA and NCA hope to provide their customers access to a large global freight network, highest quality of service, and convenient and flexible choices, responding to the growing demand."

In September 2016, ANA Cargo ended its scheduled charter operation partnership with NCA after just over three years because of a downturn in demand.

In September 2014, ANA and Germany’s Lufthansa Cargo confirmed the launch of their strategic air cargo joint venture on routes between Japan and Europe, an agreement that has been extended.

In late January this year (2018), US-based United Airlines and ANA confirmed the addition of westbound transpacific routes to their cargo joint venture.

Customers shipping goods from the US or Canada to Japan will have access to more destinations, quicker transport times and “enhanced technology to create one-stop shopping for customers”, a United Cargo statement said.

ANA has also unveiled plans for “large size freighters” to capture volumes between Asia and North America via Japan, plus an upgrade for its Okinawa cargo hub.

Last month (February)  NCA and Singapore Airlines Cargo (SIA Cargo) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to develop a strategic partnership to build on existing block space arrangements between the two airlines that have been progressively expanded over the past five years.

In November 2017, Cargolux signed a cooperation agreement with NCA that allows both partners to access each other’s capacity through code-share and space swap agreements.

The Luxembourg all-cargo carrier now has access to NCA’s flights from Frankfurt-Hahn to Tokyo (Narita) while NCA has access to Cargolux’s flights from Luxembourg to Narita.

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