Ethiopian teams up with IAI on new B767 freighter conversion line

By Damian Brett

(L) Yossi Melamed, IAI, and Tewolde GebreMariam, Ethiopian Airlines. Source: Ethiopian Airlines Group

Ethiopian Airlines Group has teamed up with Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) to launch a B767-300ER freighter conversion line in Ethiopia.

The new line will be established at the airline group’s MRO facilities at Addis Ababa Airport, with the airline being the first customer.

Ethiopian Airlines Group chief executive Tewolde GebreMariam, said: “In line with our Diversified Aviation Business Model of Vision 2025, we have been increasing our cargo capacity in fleet, ground service infrastructure and cargo connectivity network.

“Accordingly, we are partnering with IAI, one of the global technology leaders in the Aerospace industry, in building a cargo conversion center in our MRO facilities in Addis Ababa Airport. The Cargo conversion center will commence its first business with three Ethiopian Airlines owned B-767-300 aircraft.

“The Cargo Conversion Center in Addis Ababa airport will expand its services to all airlines in Africa and the wider region. We are very happy that we are able to collaborate with IAI to enable us to expand our cargo and logistics services which is already the largest and leading cargo network in Africa.

“The capacity building will also help us expand our MRO services with cutting edge technology and knowledge transfer.”

Yossi Melamed, IAI’s executive vice president and general manager of Aviation Group, said on his part said the partnership comes as the company witnesses a “sharp rise in demand for cargo aircraft” on the back of an acceleration in e-commerce demand due to the Covid-19 outbreak.

The conversion line in Ethiopia will join existing conversion sites IAI operates at its campus in Ben Gurion International Airport and in Mexico.

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