Cargo services exempt from unprecedented UAE flight ban

Published: 23 March 2020 - 8:12 a.m.

Cargo flights will continue to operate in and out of the UAE despite a decision by Emirati authorities to ban all passenger flights.

Emirati authorities implemented the flight ban as part of measures to curb the spread of the Covid-19.

It means that Etihad Cargo and Emirates SkyCargo will continue to utilise their fleets and Emirates said its 777 freighters will continue to remain “busy” as they are used to transport goods including medical supplies across the world.

Emirates’ ground handling division, dnata, has significantly reduced its operations and temporarily closed a number of offices across its international network as most of its airline customers cut flights.

While airlines around the globe have faced a collapse in travel demand, cargo operators have been called upon to work around the clock to ensure goods and medical supplies can be transported.

Etihad Aviation Group said last week that it is ramping up its cargo operations for the summer season and boosting capacity on key freight routes.

Etihad will also expand its network to capacity-constrained markets that are wrestling with decreased passenger traffic or travel bans in light of the Covid-19 outbreak.

The move will offer “a strategic cargo lifeline” and support the continuity of the global trade ecosystem, said Etihad.

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