Kenya Airways Cargo Signs Codeshare Agreement With Astral Aviation
Kenya Airways Cargo (KQ Cargo) has signed a codeshare agreement with Nairobi-based air freighter Astral Aviation with hopes of increasing trade between Africa and the Middle East.
Astral Aviation has an intricate network with hubs in Dubai, Nairobi, Johannesburg, and Liege, making it Africa’s largest air cargo handler. It uniquely provides reliable air freight services using a combination of scheduled and charter flights. Kenya Airways Cargo will put its codeshare flight numbers on Astral’s flights into Nairobi from Dubai for distribution around Africa.
KQ Cargo which delivers air freight services to over 54 key global destinations, is also a big cargo handler within Africa. The freighter’s director, Dick Murianki, commented positively on this agreement. He said the partnership would provide both airlines with more options to boost trade between the UAE and Africa.
“KQ Cargo and Astral have had a long-standing commercial cooperation for the past 20 years, and this partnership is a continuation of our efforts to strengthen collaboration and partnerships among African Airlines and boost intercontinental trade while driving sustainable development of the African continent,” he added.
An unprecedented African aviation partnership
The two Airlines have successfully co-existed for years. Sanjeev Gadhia, the Chief Executive Officer of Astral, also has high hopes for this unprecedented partnership between two African air freighters. He said to the press,
“This codeshare agreement, a first among two major players in the cargo sphere in Africa, will lead to a more efficient schedule and increased capacity for African traders wishing to bring in goods from the Middle East.”
Kenya Airways Cargo and Astral Aviation do not only supply goods to Nairobi and Eastern Africa. With a hub in Johannesburg, this agreement would also boost trade between the Middle East and Southern Africa. Bilateral trade between Dubai and Southern Africa averages $3 billion annually, with significant trade items including metals, fruit & veg, steel for construction, electronics, chemicals, and machinery.
Photo: schusterbauer.com / Shutterstock
During the COVID-19 pandemic, Astral Aviation contracted Kenya Airways’ modified Dreamliners to carry vaccines and other virus relief resources around Africa. With a joint fleet consisting of a Fokker aircraft, a DC9 freighter, and a range of Boeing freighters, including the 727-200, 767-200, 757-200, and 747-400F, this partnership will create Africa’s largest Air cargo network. The two operating from Jomo Kenyatta International Airport will cover many African regions.
Astral continues to expand.
Earlier this month, Astral Aviation was in the spotlight with another partnership. The cargo handler entered into a strategic partnership with Air Logistics Group, one of the world’s leading cargo General Sales and Services Agent.
This partnership will help Astral expand its network to Europe and the USA, offering more services to clients in Kenya, the United Kingdom, and around the United States. The objective is to increase its market share for its new perishables service worldwide.
“We look forward to our partnership with Air Logistics Group, who will be responsible for promoting Astral Aviation in the strategic markets of Europe, UK, and USA, and will cover Astral’s intra-African scheduled network of 50 destinations which are served from its Nairobi Hub, in addition to new point to point destinations from its Liege Hub to Africa,” said Sanjeev Gadhia.
Astral will continue to boost trade between Africa and significant powers.
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