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Maersk Air Cargo applies for UK license

Maersk Air Cargo applies for UK license
Maersk Air Cargo applies for UK license

Maersk Air Cargo has applied for a UK operating license. The application dated 23 April, is for “charter and scheduled flights between any combination of points, within the terms of the holder’s Air Operator’s Certificate.” 

Maersk Air Cargo (established in 1987) is a worldwide cargo airline with its own aircraft, focused on cargo services. It runs regular flights from hubs in Cologne and Leipzig, Germany, mainly serving global parcel and express delivery customers. 

The airline also operates flights from Billund, Denmark’s second-largest airport, to support Maersk customers with comprehensive supply chain solutions.

Air cargo operations 

In March 2023, Maersk announced its first flight of the new air freight service with scheduled flights between Billund, Denmark and Hangzhou, China. The launch of this service was in response to an increase in customer demand. 

At the time of this announcement, the company’s global head for air Michel Lucic said: “With the introduction of our new service between Europe and China, we have taken another leap with our customers in providing true integrated logistics. We want to ensure that our customers have the visibility, reliability, and resilience in their supply chains.” 

Why does the UK license application matter? 

A new cargo operator in the market would potentially increase the available air freight capacity. This is particularly beneficial for businesses needing to ship goods quickly and efficiently, as more options often lead to better service levels.

Here’s a scenario: A vehicle manufacturer operating in the UK needs to have urgent vehicle parts air freight to continue production. With the new charter in place, parts can be delivered fast as possible to shipment by sea. 

Supply chain shocks 

In recent months, we have seen the logistics industry being affected by the Red Sea crisis. In January Reuters reported on an air freight rate increase due to the crisis. 

We have also seen measures put in place to make the supply chain resilient in the face of these “shocks” in the industry. This month, the UK government established the Critical Imports Council to safeguard the flow of goods. 

The council’s chairperson Alan Mak says the council would  “bring together government and industry experts to help protect businesses from supply chain shocks now and in the future.”

Benefits of shipping air freight 

  • Speed: Companies may need stock urgently and choose air freight as it’s a much faster option than ocean freight. The Red Sea crisis may force manufacturers and store owners to look to air freight to prevent a serious shortage in their production line or store shelves. 
  • Reliability: Airlines run strict schedules. These schedules make it a reliable option for air freight cargo. Fresh produce is often flown via airfreight so items arrive fresh at a destination. 
  • Efficiency: Shipping by air freight is a great time saver. A manufacturer may need an urgent part to complete a project. Placing the item as air cargo will allow the manufacturer to save time instead of waiting a few weeks for ocean freight to arrive in port. 

About the author

Sharl is a qualified journalist. He has over 10 years’ experience in the media industry, including positions as an editor of a magazine and Business Editor of a daily newspaper. Sharl also has experience in logistics specifically operations, where he worked with global food aid organisations distributing food into Africa. Sharl enjoys writing business stories and human interest pieces.

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