Joint venture to turn Muscat into air cargo crossroads

Cargolux Airlines and Oman Air have signed a joint venture agreement to develop Muscat International Airport as an air cargo hub between India, China, Africa, Europe and the US.
The first Cargolux flight under the agreement operated on 16 April and a ceremony was held on board the B747 freighter to mark the occasion, including Oman Air chief executive, Paul Gregorowitsch, and his Cargolux counterpart, Dirk Reich.
The two carriers said the deal would allow Oman Air to expand its cargo operation while providing Cargolux with access to Oman Air’s belly capacity, along with new opportunities for freight transport from Oman’s port facilities.
Gregorowitsch said: “This will be the first full freighter service to have been launched from Oman and it will enable us to jointly deploy significant and commercially attractive freighter capacity throughout Oman Air’s network…It will also enable Cargolux to make use of Oman Air’s rapidly expanding freight capacity, as well as the outstanding cargo facilities at Oman’s airports.”
He predicted that traffic would include project cargo, livestock, freighter-only cargo, vehicles and aircraft engines. Oman Air has considerable experience of safely shipping such freight to locations around the world, he said.
Reich added: “We believe that this new joint venture will bring important benefits for Cargolux customers in Oman, including fast and reliable connections across Oman Air’s worldwide network.
"It will also enable us to proceed with our planned expansion of air freight services in 2015 from Oman to China, Europe, Africa and the US.” It would also allow Cargolux to use its partners capacity and expertise to 11 destinations in India and to East Africa."
Also present at the signing ceremony was François Bausch, Luxembourg’s Minister for Sustainable Development and Infrastructure.

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