MASKargo looks to China for 2010 growth

MALAYSIA Airlines Cargo (MASKargo) says that it is aiming to grow 10 to 15 per cent this year.
Managing director, Shahari Sulaiman, said that it would achieve this by growing its network through alliances and increasing its capacity.
"We are looking to expand our presence overseas with smart alliances. We feel that the worst is behind us and we can focus on doing business and expanding our freighters,” he says.
"Although the business environment still remains challenging, we in the industry are expecting 2010 to be less volatile with moderate growth forecasted.”
Shahari says that the increase it saw in demand in the lead up to Christmas caught it by surprise and that it was this that gave it "abnormal" results for the last quarter of 2009 compared to other carriers.
"A lot of [our] freighters were still parked at that time, but because of this unexpected surge, our yield improved by 20 per cent and load factor was at 75 per cent when the industry’s average was only between 50 and 55 per cent," he adds.
Shahari said MASKargo has struck a deal with China’s Hainan Group to improve connections throughout China.
This could potentially increase MASKargo’s frequency to Shanghai up to eight times.
"We are working closely and hope to start a major initiative with them by May 2010," he says.
Shahari also said that the carrier may get rid of one of its 747-200 freighters once the lease expires this April to focus more completely on its 747-400s.

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