Etihad phase out of A330 freighters is 'normal industry practice'

22 / 01 / 2018

  • Etihad A330-200F Network

    Etihad A330-200F Network

Etihad Airways has said that the phase out of its A330-200F fleet is "normal industry practice".

According to flight tracking website Flight Radar, the airline's fleet of five A330-200Fs have been inactive for at least the last seven days as Etihad phases out the aircraft.

It is understood it will continue to fly its cargo operations utilising its fleet of five B777Fs.

The airline itself said there is nothing unusual about the decision to phase out the freighters.

"It is normal airline industry business practice to continuously review aircraft requirements and to make modifications to the fleet when and where necessary," a spokesperson told Air Cargo News.

The aircraft were mainly used on services to India, Bangladesh, Vietnam, China, Kuwait, Ethiopia, Kenya, Italy, Germany and the Netherlands.

Industry commentators have suggested the aircraft are not ideal for the cargo market at present.

The last of the 62 tonne capacity A330F aircraft, which continue to be listed on the Etihad Cargo website,  arrived in the fleet in February 2017.

At this stage it is not known what will happen to the freighters.

In 2016, the overall airline registered a $1.8bn loss, while cargo revenues dropped by 10% despite a 0.8% increase in cargo volumes to 595,916 tonnes, prompting a review of the overall business.

Last year, the airline also saw its long time vice president cargo David Kerr leave the company, replaced by Justin Carr in November.

Meanwhile, group chief executive James Hogan stepped down from the top job in July to be replaced by Tony Douglas.

Read more freighter operator news