Cathay Pacific Cargo to add more ports in India

Anjana Chandramouly Bangalore | Updated on August 04, 2011 Published on August 04, 2011

A file picture of a Cathay Pacific Boeing 747 cargo aircraft.

Cathay Pacific Cargo wants to increase frequencies on its existing routes in India and also add more freighter ports to its network in the country.

The freighter airline started its Bangalore services on August 1. Currently, the airline services three other ports in India — New Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai.

“Cargo business accounts for 28 per cent of the airline group's total revenues from India,” said Mr Nick Rhodes, Global Director, Cathay Pacific Cargo, told Business Line.

In 2010, the airline group carried over 50,000 tonnes in both passenger and cargo flights from India. Cathay Pacific Cargo has 31 weekly services to India.

Volume Growth

On growth in volumes and revenues from India, he said the freighter airline saw a growth of 28 per cent in tonnages and 68 per cent increase in revenues, without divulging further information.

“We expect similar growth in 2011 as well,” said Mr Ashish Kapur, Regional Cargo Manager – South Asia, Middle East and Africa, Cathay Pacific Airways. However, Mr Rhodes said that freighter rates were a challenge now, as the rates were either flat or marginally up from last year depending on market conditions.

“With increasing fuel costs, airlines are forced to pass on fuel surcharge to customers,” he added.

Though India has predominantly been a general cargo market, “it is now becoming a source for special businesses, thus offering a good mix of cargo,” he said.

There is a “lot of flow of IT parts, electronics, auto parts and garments in the India sector,” added Mr Rhodes.

“We are quite bullish on India and want to steadily increase our presence here,” he said. The freighter airline wants to focus big on the South, including Hyderabad, “but depending on infrastructure in India keeping pace”.

With its new service to Bangalore, the freighter airline hopes to double its capacity. “We have 15-20 tonnes of cargo a day on our passenger services to Bangalore,” said Mr Rhodes. Cathay Pacific Airways runs a daily passenger flight on the Hong Kong-Bangalore route through Dragonair.

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Published on August 04, 2011
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