VietJetAir (VJ, Hanoi) has established a dedicated cargo unit which has plans to begin commercial operations during the second half fo the year.
Vietjet Air Cargo Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Do Xuan Quang said he expects to commence operations in October this year using an unspecified cargo aircraft. According to Do, the bellyhold capacity onboard VietJetAir's A320/A321ceo fleet is insufficient for their needs hence the acquisition of a dedicated freighter.
“We are planning to buy or lease a freighter and really build up our cargo operations," he told The Loadstar.
According to Quang, VietJet Air Cargo has already secured its first contract - with a logistics company in Korea. Initial services will focus on Southeast Asia, with Singapore Changi, Bangkok Suvarnabhumi,Hong Kong Chek Lap Kok, and Manila Ninoy Aquino Int'l key destinations. Should those services prove profitable, flights to Tokyo Narita, Seoul Incheon, Shanghai Pudong, and Dubai Int'l are planned.
"After that, if successful, we will continue to expand to Europe - Frankfurt, Amsterdam, London, Paris, - and even New York. These are our big plans for the future," he added.
Launch of new alliances boosts vessel demand
The launch of the new carrier alliances on the east-west trades on 1 April 2017 has boosted demand for vessels and the final tally of containership tonnage, to be deployed on the revamped Asia-Europe, Transpacific and Transatlantic routes, is to increase by 5% (by teu capacity) and 4% (by vessel count) compared to March, based on figures compiled by Alphaliner.
Compared against the peak season deployment of summer 2016, total vessel capacity planned for this summer will be 2% higher. At the same time, the number of deployed ships is set to fall as carriers continue upgrading services to larger vessel sizes. The tonnage removed as a result of Hanjin Shipping’s withdrawal from the east-west trades in September 2016 will be fully restored with the new services launched on 1 April by the 2M+HMM, OCEAN Alliance and THE Alliance, as well as various independent carriers including newcomer SM Line who kicked off its new transpacific service last week.
Of the 913 ships to be deployed on the east-west services, carriers have secured most of the required tonnage, with some seven ships still to be named, according to Alphaliner’s latest analysis of schedules published by carriers. An analysis of the vessel deployment by size range shows significant increases in the 14,000-20,000 teu segment as well as the 5,500-10,000 teu size segment, while the 10,000-13,300 teu sector shrinks together with the smaller 3,000-5,100 teu sector.