Asiana board approves plans to sell its cargo business

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The Asiana Airlines board has approved plans to sell its cargo business as part of efforts to appease European regulators concerned over the impact of its takeover by Korean Air.

Earlier today, the carrier’s board approved the plan to offload the cargo unit to another Korean airline after the European Commission in May said the takeover would result in reduced competition between Europe and South Korea.

The board had originally been due to make a decision on Monday, but decided more time was needed to discuss the plan.

Korean Air said that it had now submitted its plans to European regulators, which also include the ending of four European routes.

However, the deal still faces further hurdles. The two airlines also require approval from competition authorities in Japan and the US and Korean will need to find a buyer.

However, it has gained approval in Singapore, China and the UK.

Unions are also thought to be opposed to the deal over fears of job losses.

Korean Air’s network covers 120 cities in 43 countries and it operates an extensive freighter fleet, handling 1.6m tons of cargo internationally and 36,000 tons domestically in 2020.

Asiana Airlines’ international cargo business covers 12 countries, 27 cities and 25 routes and accounts for around 20% of the carrier’s total revenue

According to, the carrier operates 10 Boeing 747-400 freighters and a single Boeing 767-300 freighter.

Korean Air first announced plans to acquire Asiana in November 2020 but the timetable fell victim to the Covid pandemic and resulting turmoil in the airline industry.

According to earlier reports, Korean Air has been in talks with several other carriers to buy the cargo assets.

Asiana Airlines delays decision on the sale of its cargo business

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Damian Brett

Damian Brett
I have been writing about the freight and logistics industry since 2007 when I joined International Freighting Weekly to cover the shipping sector.After a stint in PR, I have gone on to work for Containerisation International and Lloyds List - where I was editor of container shipping - before joining Air Cargo News in 2015.Contact me on [email protected]