June 18 - With reports that Germany's Lufthansa has advised that a troubled Chinese freight venture was being wound up, it would appear to be all over for Jade Cargo International.

The venture with China's Shenzhen Airlines, in which Lufthansa holds a 25 percent stake, is being dissolved because of tough freight conditions in the world's second-largest aviation market, Lufthansa chief executiveChristoph Franz, is reported to have told Reuters.

Jade Cargo, whose operations have been grounded since January as its owners held talks on financing, announced at the end of February that Chinese transportation group UniTop had agreed to come on board as a partner. The airline's website is no longer avaialble.

HLPFI understands that the airline will cease operations and the company will be dissolved.

The fact that Jade Cargo International has folded will doubtless send a chill down the collective spines of those who saw the expanding sector as hope for the future. 

With principal shareholders including Shenzen Airlines, Lufthansa and institutional German investors the venture would seem to have had the twin advantages of home market knowledge and established international management.

Jade ran a fleet of half a dozen aircraft serving the Middle East, Europe and India.