Air cargo charter operations from China have been swinging into action over the last few days as Covid lockdowns continue to affect operations from the country.

In one operation, Bollore Logistics utilised charter flights for an urgent shipment of 25 tons of diabetes treatments due to the cancellation of scheduled flights out of China.

The forwarder faced issues with the transportation of the medication from Italy to China due to the Covid-19 Delta variant outbreak in Shanghai, Beijing, Hong Kong, and other Chinese cargo hubs, and, consequently, ground handling failures.

In response, the forwarder worked with freighter operator AirBridgeCargo Airlines to charter a B747F flight from Milano to Shanghai to carry a mix of 38 Envirotainer and DoKaSch RAP containers loaded onto the maindeck.

Elsewhere, charter broker 26Aviation arranged the charter of a 747-400F operating from Zhengzhou, China on its inaugural flight to the UAE, where it received a water-cannon welcome at Al-Maktoum airport.

The aircraft, which operates for Aerotranscargo, was paying its first visit to the UAE, and was carrying 90 tons of urgent humanitarian cargo that had been stranded in China due to the ongoing air freight crisis that has plagued the region in recent weeks.

“Following multiple cargo terminal closures, staff quarantine shortages and even rumours of full suspensions throughout the major Chinese cargo hubs, the charter specialist’s dilemma wasn’t based purely on short notice aircraft availability, but also on finding an airport and cargo terminal to handle the flight,” the company said.

Managing director, Sam Heather, said: “It was absolutely critical that we used a carrier who had a strong presence in China, as well as an airport that avoided the rapidly escalating disruptions in Shanghai, Nanjing, and Tianjin.

“We worked in close cooperation with our GSA partner Air One Aviation, the carrier and handling agents in both Zhengzhou and Dubai to ensure that the cargo was delivered within the urgent timeframes required.”

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