Ethiopian Airlines, the largest cargo operator in Africa, received its third B777-200 LR Freighter on 3 November 2014.
Ethiopian was the first in Africa to receive the B777-200 LR freighter on 19 September 2012 and is still the only African operator of this modern aircraft. The aircraft, which has exceptional uplift, range, fuel efficiency and temperature control capabilities, is perfectly suited for the transport of Ethiopia’s growing export of perishables, such as fruits, flowers, vegetables and meat.
In line with its Vision 2025 strategic roadmap and its commitment to support the country’s export of perishables, Ethiopian is fast expanding its cargo fleet and infrastructure. The airline will phase in an additional B777-200 LR freighter before the end of 2014 and 2 more in 2015. It is also building a new cargo terminal with both cold and dry storage facilities, capable of handling 1.2 million tons of cargo annually, making it one of the biggest in the world.
"We are phasing in the most modern cargo aircraft such as the B777-200 LR freighter and building one of the largest cargo terminals in the world with the aim of expanding and improving our cargo service in support of our country’s and our continent’s growing imports and exports. The B777 Freighter is unmatched in its fleet category and will be deployed on existing and new long routes for carriage of flowers, fruits, vegetables and meat," said Mr. Tewolde Gebremariam, CEO of Ethiopian.
Ethiopian Cargo, the largest cargo operator in Africa, currently flies to 24 freighter destinations in Africa, the Middle East, Asia and Europe using 8 dedicated freighters, including wide-bodies such as the B777-200 LR and MD-11 aircraft.
Ethiopian Airlines (Ethiopian) is the fastest growing and most profitable airline in Africa. In 2014, IATA ranked Ethiopian as the largest airline in Africa in revenue and profit. In its operations in the past close to seven decades, Ethiopian has been a pioneer of African aviation as an aircraft technology leader providing the first jet service in the continent in 1962, and availing the first African B767 in 1984, the first African B777-200LR in 2010 and the first African and second only to Japan B787 Dreamliner in 2012.
Ethiopian commands the lion share of the pan-African passenger and cargo network operating the youngest and most modern fleet to more than 83 international destinations across five continents. Ethiopian fleet includes ultra-modern and environmentally friendly aircraft such as the Boeing 787, Boeing 777-300ER, Boeing 777-200LR, Boeing 777-200LR Freighter and Bombardier Q-400 with double cabin. In fact, Ethiopian is the first airline in Africa to own and operate these aircraft.
Ethiopian is currently implementing a 15-year strategic plan called Vision 2025 that will see it become the leading airline group in Africa with seven strategic business units: Ethiopian International Passenger Service; Ethiopian Regional Service; Ethiopian Cargo; Ethiopian MRO; Ethiopian Aviation Academy; Ethiopian In-flight Catering Service and Ethiopian Ground Service. Ethiopian is a multi-award winning, including SKYTRAX and Passenger Choice Awards in 2013 and has been registering an average growth of 25% per annum in the past seven years.