Cathay Pacific’s second new route of the year has got off to a promising start. The four-times weekly seasonal service to Barcelona started on 2 July and will operate over the summer period, but it is already netting good cargo volumes.
Cargo Manager, Spain Maria Garcia said: “We have received a good response from agents and our cargo load factors have been between 80-100% since we started operating the flight, predominantly with general cargo.”
Barcelona is a busy cargo airport, particularly for general cargo. It would be the busiest but for a global luxury clothing brand headquarted in Spain which uses both the freighter-focused Zaragoza and Madrid for its imports and exports.
Country Manager, Spain Jansen Stafford added: “In business terms we are seeing something of a shift from Northern Spain down to the eastern side, around Barcelona and Valencia. There’s a lot of manufacturing moving down here, and this is also a centre for produce, especially fruit.
“It’s a great opportunity for us and the city to open up to China and the rest of Asia. Spanish people are interested in all things Asian, and Spain is already exporting a lot of produce to Asia, including the famous jamon.”
Because the route is seasonal, forwarders are reluctant to commit to regular business, but as Maria pointed out: “Regular business that we had before that was trucked from Barcelona to be flown from Madrid can now be shipped directly, and some agents would rather wait a day for a direct flight than truck consignments to the capital.”
The service is operated by an Airbus A350-900.