Air Atlanta Icelandic signed a long-term ACMI deal to place a 747-400 freighter with Network Airline Management (NAM) and Astral Aviation.
The added capacity will help NAM expand its perishables capacity for exports of flowers and vegetables from Nairobi to the United Kingdom. On Nov. 7, the freighter made its inaugural flight from London’s Stansted Airport to Nairobi’s Jomo Kenyatta International Airport.
NAM said it expects to handle 33,000 tonnes per year of perishables exports from East Africa to Europe. In addition, the nose-loading capabilities of the freighter will offer options for shipments of outsized oil, gas and mining equipment for West and East Africa.
Astral Aviation CEO Sanjeev Gadhia said the carrier is “cautiously optimistic” about perishables export growth from Africa to Europe in the near future, as well as import growth to Africa driven by e-commerce and oil and gas development. “Growth is set to remain in double digits for the remainder of 2017,” he added.