August 23 - AirBridgeCargo Airlines (ABC), Russia's largest scheduled all-cargo carrier, has launched a three-times a week Boeing 747-400 freighter service to Zhengzhou as it positions itself to support China's 12th five-year development plan.
ABC already operates routes from Beijing, Hong Kong and Shanghai to Russia and other major trade gateways in Europe. The new flights, starting August 19th 2011, will operate every Wednesday, Friday and Saturday on a routing from Maastricht and Amsterdam in the Netherlands through Yekaterinburg and Krasnoyarsk in Russia and onto Zhengzhou.
Situated in north-central China, Zhengzhou is the capital and largest city of Henan province with a population of 8.6 million people. It serves as the political, economic, technological, and educational centre of the province and is also a major transportation hub for Central China.
AirBridgeCargo expects a high proportion of its 112 tonnes capacity per flight from the Chinese city to be filled with high-tech cargoes from the large IT production plants in the region.
ABC will feed cargo onto its flights to Zhengzhou from across Europe, using its existing road feeder network to deliver shipments to the Netherlands for flight departures from Maastricht and Amsterdam. Similarly, it will offer distribution to major points around Europe for incoming freight from China.
Tatyana Arslanova, executive president of AirBridgeCargo Airlines, said: "The Chinese provinces are on the business radar of many airlines given their enormous market size and growth potential and AirBridgeCargo is no exception. We have all seen that 12th five-year development plan of China (2011-2015) which presupposes significant growth of many provinces and we want to ensure ABC is there in the centre of this development, building our presence and offering excellent air logistics solutions. The launch of three Boeing 747-400F flights per week from Zhengzhou reflects our confidence in the market and is part of our fleet and network development strategy for South East Asia."