Middle East air freight disruption looms as Qatar is blacklisted over ‘terror links’

By Alex Lennane

Air freight transhipped via the Middle East could be disrupted after several countries decided to cut air, sea, land and diplomatic ties with Qatar. Saudia Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain, Egypt, Yemen and Libya have all announced a break-off in ties with Qatar over its continued support of Muslim Brotherhood and its relationship with Iran.

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Airlines and shipping step up to maintain supply lines as Qatar battles blockade

By Alex Lennane

As Qatar battles major boycotts, Oman’s ports of Sohar and Salalah are set to handle its regional sea trade, while airlines, including Iran Air, are carrying large quantities of food imports. Since early June, when seven countries cut ties to Qatar, carriers have been working out new routings to avoid a direct link between the UAE’s ports and Qatar’s. With container hubs at Jebel Ali, Khar Fakkan, Fujairah and Abu Dhabi no longer able to ship directly to Qatar, Oman is set to become the key transit point.

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Freighter ambitions curbed as more countries impose aircraft age restrictions

By Ian Putzger

Cargo aircraft operators in Thailand are facing age limits on commercial aircraft brought into the country, which would severely limit their ability to take on converted freighters. And the authorities have yet to announce a cap on the service age of planes already registered in Thailand for commercial use, which could further undermine the viability of placing cargo aircraft in the kingdom. The proposed ceiling for freighters to be deployed in Thailand is 18 years at registration, compared with 16 years for passenger planes.

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AF-KLM blames cargo losses on low load factors and stiff competition

By Alex Lennane

Air France-KLM announced yet another full-year loss in its cargo operations. However, there was a 1 per cent improvement on 2015, at €244 million. Its fourth-quarter results fell 5 per cent year-on-year to a loss of €28 million, following a loss of €23 million last year, despite improved market conditions at the end of last year, as volumes fell 5 per cent on 4 per cent less capacity.

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‘Aloha Air Canada’ as Tim Strauss is set to replace cargo chief Lise-Marie Turpin

By Alex Lennane

The search for a replacement for Lise-Marie Turpin, well-respected cargo chief of Air Canada, has come to a close. Tim Strauss, Vice-President, Cargo, for Hawaiian Airlines, is expected to take up the post on her retirement, The Loadstar has learned.

Ms. Turpin told Air Canada last year she wanted to retire, but would wait for the right replacement. She has held the position of Vice-President, Cargo, for five years and was Managing Director, Cargo, for nearly four years. Under her tenure Air Canada Cargo has become known for its innovation, both in technology and operations. One executive told The Loadstar “she will be a hard act to follow”.

Equally, however, the Hawaiian shirt-sporting Mr. Strauss has made a name for himself in cargo, becoming one of the most enthusiastic industry chiefs. He spent four years as MD, Cargo, before becoming Vice-President, Cargo, in July 2014. He previously worked for Delta Airlines Cargo as MD Global Operations.

One executive said: “Tim Strauss is a good guy, and Air Canada is a great airline in cargo. So he’ll get a smooth-running machine that has nowhere to go but up.” It is believed that Mr. Strauss will join the carrier on April 1, while Ms. Turpin will leave at the end of April. Air Canada and Hawaiian Airlines were unable to confirm the appointment before publication.

Reprinted courtesy of The Loadstar (www.theloadstar.co.uk)

Canada Jetlines and Jet Metal Corporation applaud Minister Garneau for approving exemption request

Jet Metal Corp. and Canada Jetlines Ltd. are pleased to announce that Jim Scott, CEO of Jetlines and Mark Morabito, President & CEO of Jet Metal Corp. applauded the announcement by federal Transport Minister Marc Garneau that he has approved Jetlines’ request for exemption from current foreign ownership rules, which will allow the airline to access necessary capital in order to begin operations.

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Air Canada Cargo and Cargojet launch FRA flight as they announce strong results

By Alex Lennane

Carrier partners Cargojet and Air Canada are to launch a weekly freighter service to Frankfurt in November, connecting with flights from Mexico, Bogota and Lima and Dallas. The two airlines, which finalized an agreement for Air Canada Cargo to wet-lease 767-300Fs this year, also each reported third-quarter results.

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Ruslan and the AN-124 could be forced out of business as Russia and Ukraine squabble

By Alex Lennane

The future of the AN-124 aircraft is in serious doubt after Ukrainian manufacturer Antonov said it would not work with Russian companies after January 1 2017, and could halt international AN-124 operations. Ukraine announced recently that it was leaving the trilateral Ukraine-Russia-NATO Strategic Airlift Interim Solution (SALIS), which would also see the end of Ruslan, the joint marketing agreement between Antonov Airlines and Volga-Dnepr.

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Dear Amazon (and the rest), you can learn how to ship lithium batteries safely

By Nicholas Mohr

The fine imposed on Amazon in the UK for breaches of the dangerous goods regulations focuses attention again on the importance of ensuring that companies despatch in full compliance. In the case of Amazon, there was the potential for disaster, as four separate shipments of lithium batteries and flammable aerosols were not declared.

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Amazon is fined again: for trying to fly lithium-ion batteries

By Alex Lennane

If Amazon really wants to be taken seriously in the transport industry, it is going to have to learn – and teach – the regulations on the shipment of dangerous goods. Last week the UK’s CAA fined it £65,000 for attempting to fly lithium-ion batteries and flammable aerosols. Amazon’s lawyer argued that the court should have some perspective, as the cargoes were merely “everyday household items”.

The fine, a drop in the ocean for the internet giant, follows similar violations outlined by the FAA in June. The FAA proposed a $350,000 fine after a chemical leaked through packaging, endangering nine UPS employees. The FAA, which claimed Amazon was not training its staff properly, said the company “has a history of violating the Hazardous Materials Regulations.” From February 2013 to September 2015, Amazon was found to have violated such regulations 24 times. Just two weeks later the FAA proposed yet another fine, of $130,000, for violating hazardous material regulations. The FAA is seeking some $1.3 million in fines from the e-tailer in total, noted Reuters.

Reprinted courtesy of The Loadstar (www.theloadstar.co.uk )

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