Alitalia: “The show goes on” says AF-KLM cargo boss

Air France-KLM’s cargo boss says that the “show goes on” with Alitalia, despite the Italian flag carrier’s intention to end a belly space marketing partnership agreement with the Franco-Dutch airline when it ends in early 2017.
Bram Gräber, executive vice president of Air France-KLM-Martinair Cargo, confirmed that Alitalia has notified AF-KLM group that a passenger and cargo partnership will not be renewed from January 2017.
Alitalia, now 49% owned by UAE-based Etihad Airways, said that the AF-KLM agreements, dating back to 2009, “are no longer beneficial, either commercially or strategically”, to the new Alitalia, “with the result that the agreements in their current forms favour the other party”.
Gräber, speaking in Paris at the opening of a €22m express parcels hub at CDG Airport, said: “Part of the partnership agreement was a very important cooperation in the cargo sphere in which we have quite successfully taken charge commercially of all the belly space of Alitalia Cargo.
“We will continue as we were 48 hours ago, servicing this contract all the way. For me, two years in our cargo business is long enough to consider that a higher priority than any other speculation.”
He continued: “So the show goes on and we will continue to market the bellies without any change as we did before receiving the Alitalia letter.
“We will see how things evolve, but January 2017, in cargo terms, is a long time from now…close to eternity.”

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