AirBridge Cargo (ABC), Russia’s first and largest international scheduled cargo airline, has joined Cargo 2000 and will use its quality system to underpin its commitment to the highest levels of customer service.

As the scheduled cargo airline of Volga-Dnepr Group, ABC commenced operations in 2004. With a fleet of Boeing 747 freighters, it carried more than 80,000 tons of cargo in 2006, generating sales revenues in excess of US$230 million. The airline currently operates 10 flights a week ex Frankfurt and four per week ex Amsterdam to Russia, providing daily and twice daily services to Moscow (SVO and DME) and five flights a week to Krasnoyarsk. ABC also operates seven services a week to and from Shanghai and four flights a week to and from Beijing in China in addition to four services a week from Nagoya to Russia and Europe and three flights serving Hong Kong from Frankfurt and Amsterdam.

Stan Wraight, Vice President of Volga-Dnepr Group responsible for scheduled cargo operations, said: ‘It has always been our intention to join Cargo 2000 once we had the management team and processes in place to support the implementation of Cargo 2000’s quality system. Coupled with the introduction of a new IT system in 2007, we are now ready to move forward with Cargo 2000.

‘As AirBridge Cargo is still a young airline, we do not need to replace old, legacy quality systems. We expect Cargo 2000 to quickly become a key part of our customer service commitment and to support the next stages of our development. This will see our fleet double in size in 2007/8 ’ including the arrival of three new Boeing 747-400ER Freighters ’ and the launch of services to the Americas in late 2007 using the trans-polar route to initially serve Toronto and Houston.’

Ron Cesana, Project Director of Cargo 2000, added: ‘We are delighted to be extending the reach of Cargo 2000 to the Russian air cargo market, which we see becoming of even greater importance in terms of world trade in the years ahead. With its growing fleet and network, AirBridge will have much to gain from using Cargo 2000’s quality system and we welcome the airline to our group.’

ABC is the 22nd airline to join Cargo 2000. The group’s other airline members are Air Canada, Air France, Alitalia, American Airlines, Asiana, Austrian Airlines, British Airways World Cargo, Cargolux, Cathay Pacific, Delta, Etihad, JAL, KLM, Korean Airlines, Lufthansa Cargo, Nippon Cargo Airlines, Polar Air Cargo, SAS Cargo, Singapore, Swiss WorldCargo and United Airlines.