by Will Waters.
IAG Cargo expands Qatar Airways freighter deal
Partnership extended indefinitely and increased to nine destinations, including Shanghai-Madrid and Islamabad-Kuwait services
IAG Cargo has significantly extended its capacity partnership with Qatar Airways, one year on from the signing of their landmark freighter deal that led IAG to abandon its former freighter partner Atlas Air in favour of a more limited capacity arrangement with the ambitious Doha carrier.
In addition to a contract extension, IAG Cargo and Qatar Airways said they had “created one of the broadest collaborations in the cargo industry” by expanding the number of destinations the deal covers to nine routes on which IAG Cargo purchases capacity. A new Shanghai to Madrid service and a new feed from Islamabad to the IAG Cargo network – via Kuwait – have launched, representing this latest stage of the partnership. IAG Cargo said it was also increasing the capacity it books on the regional routes covered by the Qatar Airways partnership.
Routes now included in the IAG Cargo-Qatar Airways partnership are: Hong Kong to London and Madrid; Mumbai to London; Dhaka to London; Pakistan (Karachi and Lahore) to three Middle Eastern points (Doha, Dubai and Kuwait); Delhi to London; Chennai to London; and now Shanghai to Madrid and Islamabad to Kuwait.
By connecting to IAG Cargo’s wider network through its London and Madrid hubs, IAG said today’s deal opened up valuable routes for businesses looking to trade between Asia, Europe and Latin America. It said the deal would prove particularly beneficial in supporting flows of garments from Pakistan and consumer electronics from Shanghai.
Steve Gunning, CEO of IAG Cargo, commented: “Our freighter partnership model with Qatar has worked very well. That’s why today I am pleased to announce that we are extending the deal indefinitely, as well as increasing the number of destinations covered through the partnership.
“Through such agreements we are able to support our customers where they need us and drive network growth in an asset-light way. This puts IAG Cargo in a strong position and allows us to focus on delivering the quality products and services our customers demand.”
Ulrich Ogiermann, Qatar Airways’ chief officer for cargo, commented: “Qatar Airways Cargo is delighted to further enhance its freight operations and strengthen existing commercial ties with IAG Cargo. As the world’s fifth largest cargo carrier, Qatar Airways Cargo’s expanding fleet and exceptional growth, together with our proven reliability and global network, offer a strong platform to enable bilateral alliances. Our collaboration with IAG Cargo has proved successful over the past year and this partnership continues to represent an excellent opportunity to develop our business strategy through mutually beneficial commercial agreements.”
IAG Cargo is the single business created following the merger of British Airways World Cargo and Iberia Cargo in April 2011. In 2014 the operations of British Airways World Cargo and Iberia Cargo had a commercial revenue of €992 million.