Phnom Penh : Qatar Airways Cargo has announced that it has started its first freighter service to the Cambodian city of Phnom Penh.
The A330 freighter operating on the Doha-Phnom Penh-Doha route once a week will offer over 60 tonnes of cargo capacity each way, the airline said in a press statement.
Garments, which represent the largest portion of Cambodia's manufacturing sector and account for 80 per cent of the country's exports, represent the majority of uplift out of Cambodia.
Qatar Airways Cargo currently carries more than 70 tonnes of belly-hold cargo on the daily wide-body passenger flights to Phnom Penh via Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, every week.
The introduction of direct freighter services on this route offers exporters "increased capacity and flexibility" to transport their commodities to Qatar Airways' global network of more than 150 destinations via its hub in Doha, the press statement said.
"This is our fifth freighter destination launched this year, in tandem with our increased fleet size," said Ulrich Ogiermann, Chief Officer, Cargo division, Qatar Airways.
"Intra-Asia air cargo has grown over the years, and we have observed substantial migration of manufacturing trade from China to Southeast Asian countries such as Cambodia and Vietnam," he said.
Asia Pacific is a prime air freight market for Qatar Airways Cargo, and the launch of freighter service to Phnom Penh increases the cargo carrier's freighter network to seven destinations on the continent.
New passenger flights to Canberra in Australia and Medan in Indonesia have also been announced recently, in addition to the existing 29 passenger destinations in Asia Pacific.
Qatar Airways Cargo recently took delivery of its 12th Boeing 777F, taking the total count of freighters in operation to 21. The cargo carrier offers QR Charter, which utilises its fleet of Boeing B777s, Airbus A330s, and Boeing 747 freighters.
Its portfolio of products currently includes QR Pharma, QR Fresh, QR Live and QR Express, offering "efficiency and compliance" in the handling of temperature-sensitive pharmaceutical and perishable cargo, transportation of live animals as well as time-critical shipments.