Qantas will lease a Boeing 747-400ERF to replace an older Boeing 747-400F freighter that is currently operated for it by an external provider.
To be branded in the distinctive new Qantas Freight livery, the 747-400ERF is expected to enter service by the end of 2013, subject to regulatory approval. It will be operated by Express Freighters Australia, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Qantas Freight.
Qantas Freight Enterprises executive manager Lisa Brock said the -400ERF offered greater capacity and range, and would deliver increased efficiency.
“With an existing lease arrangement coming to an end we have taken this opportunity to update our international fleet,” Brock said, adding the near-new aircraft would reduce operating costs.
“Qantas Freight now has a five per cent share of the cargo market from China to the United States, flying from both Shanghai and Chongqing. We have a strong presence in other parts of Asia and New Zealand.
Following Qantas’s recent acquisition of 100 per cent of Australian air Express, the Qantas Freight has a fleet of 13 freight aircraft including three wetleased 747-400Fs, one 767-300F, four 737-300CF aircraft, four BAe 146s and one Saab 340.