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Cathay delivers the future with next-generation freighter order AVIATOR

Strengthening Hong Kong as the world’s number one air cargo hub with Airbus A350F freighters

Cathay delivers the future with next-generation freighter order

Friday, December 8, 2023 — Cathay Cargo has taken another important step towards achieving its vision of becoming the world’s most customer-centric air cargo service brand with the announcement today of its selection of the next-generation Airbus A350F freighter to meet its future fleet requirements. Cathay has placed an initial firm order with Airbus for six aircraft and has secured the right to acquire 20 more aircraft.

This order for state-of-the-art aircraft to be delivered commencing from 2027 will help further strengthen Hong Kong’s status as the world’s number one air cargo hub, providing even greater cargo connectivity between Hong Kong, the Chinese Mainland and the rest of the world.

Cathay Group Chief Executive Officer Ronald Lam said: “As we move into 2024, our rebuild journey is gaining momentum. This order marks another major component in our investment for the future. It reflects Cathay’s confidence in the Hong Kong hub as we look ahead to the opportunities provided by the Three-Runway System.

“These highly fuel-efficient, next-generation freighters will provide important additional cargo capacity, expand our global network and contribute to our sustainability leadership goals.”

These freighters will link Hong Kong and the Chinese Mainland with long-haul destinations in North and South America as well as Europe. The purchase agreement brings the Cathay Group’s new aircraft deliveries to 77.

Airbus Chief Commercial Officer and Head of International Christian Scherer said: “There’s a new standard in the cargo space and we are gratified that such a savvy global air-cargo operator as Cathay has joined the growing number of reference players in the air-freight industry selecting the A350F.”

Cathay Cargo has a freighter fleet of 20 Boeing 747 freighters, including 14 B747-8Fs and six B747-400ERFs. In addition to freighter capacity, Cathay Cargo provides belly capacity through the Cathay Group’s extensive passenger network, providing cargo services to around 80 destinations worldwide.

The Cathay Group’s order book includes 21 Boeing 777-9 wide-body passenger aircraft scheduled to be delivered from 2025 and a total of 49 Airbus A320neo and A321neo aircraft expected to be delivered by 2029. 

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