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Cathay cargo down a third as lack of belly capacity drags down volumes

HONG KONG's Cathay Pacific Group's overall tonnage in April dropped nearly a third from the previous month, impacted as it was by a further contraction of bellyhold capacity across the passenger network, said the company's monthly briefing

18 May 2020 - 19:00

HONG KONG's Cathay Pacific Group's overall tonnage in April dropped nearly a third from the previous month, impacted as it was by a further contraction of bellyhold capacity across the passenger network, said the company's monthly briefing.

The movement of certain cargo, such as perishables, seafood, live animals, industrial parts and equipment, was also negatively affected by lockdown measures around the world. Nevertheless, Cathay continued to carry significant quantities of medical supplies from mainland China and Hong Kong, said the statement.



'Significant effort was made to prioritise capacity for routings with the highest air freight demand, most notably to the Americas, Australia and Europe,' said chief commercial officer Ronald Lam.



'We also increased the utilisation of our existing freighter fleet, chartered more flights from our subsidiary Air Hong Kong, and successfully operated over 500 pairs of cargo-only passenger flights - more than double the number we operated in March.



'To further expand our available capacity, at the end of April we began loading cargo in the cabins of our Boeing 777 passenger aircraft, which we expect will serve long-haul markets especially well in the months to come,' said Mr Lam.



As for passengers he said: 'We operated only a bare skeleton passenger flight schedule serving just 14 destinations in April. Passenger demand continued to fall during the month and we carried fewer than 500 passengers per day only. The ban on transit traffic through Hong Kong together with minimal demand for outbound travel meant that the majority of our very limited traffic came from inbound travellers, notably from North America and the UK,' he said.


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