Etihad Airways has signed a multi-year Aircraft, Crew, Maintenance and Insurance (ACMI) agreement with Atlas Air Worldwide to provide the UAE flag carrier with its first Boeing 747-8 Freighter.
The full liveried Etihad Cargo Boeing 747-8 Freighter will be the largest in the carrier’s growing freighter fleet. The aircraft has a payload capacity of 138 tons and a range of more than 8,000 kilometres.
This is the second such ACMI agreement between Atlas Air and Etihad Airways, complementing an existing lease agreement signed for a Boeing 747-400 Freighter in May 2012.
The delivery will take Etihad Cargo’s freighter fleet to nine aircraft. From June the airline will also operate three Boeing B777F, one Boeing 747-400ERF, one Boeing 747-400F and three Airbus A330-200F.
James Hogan, Etihad Airways President and Chief Executive Officer, said: “Cargo is one of our key strategic pillars and a growing part of the business. In 2012, it delivered tonnage growth of 19 per cent on the back of a capacity increase of 14 per cent in available tonnage kilometres.
“This deal with Atlas for a Boeing 747-8 Freighter reinforces our ability to serve a growing number of customers from around the globe.
“As we continue to add depth and scale to our cargo operations we look forward to fully leveraging the aircraft’s capability and efficient cost base to grow our reach, and facilitate global trade into, out of, and through the UAE.”
William J. Flynn, President and Chief Executive Officer, Atlas Air Worldwide, said: “We’re pleased to expand our relationship with Etihad Airways and help it extend its reach with next-generation performance in payload, fuel efficiency and total cost per tonne-mile.
“Together with our global operations and our reliable, high-quality service, Etihad now has additional flexibility to take advantage of market opportunities.”
Atlas is the only ACMI provider in the world to offer the Boeing 747-8F aircraft to its customers.