Ethiopian Airlines converts 25 passenger planes to cargo to support high freight demand

Ethiopian Airlines is one of the few companies in the world to have made a profit in 2020. Due to the drop in global passenger traffic, it has focused on strengthening its cargo capacity. A more than winning choice!

Ethiopian Airlines is definitely one step ahead in business. Faced with the drastic drop in global demand for passenger transport since March 2020, due to Covid-19, the Ethiopian carrier has made the “quick decision” to convert 25 passenger planes into auxiliary cargo ships (temporary conversions). This operational choice, consisting in concentrating more capacity on freight operations, seems to smile on him.

Speaking at a CAPA Live event, Ethiopian Airlines CEO Tewolde GebreMariam revealed that the move has helped the company strengthen its financial health.

“We have a very solid cash flow,” he said. To this day, the company remains backed by its “internal resources, without external bailouts, without any borrowing for liquidity purposes, and without any dismissal or reduction in wages. “

The converted Ethiopian Airlines aircraft include five 737-800, five Dash 8-Q400, four Airbus A350-900, four Boeing 777-300ER, two Boeing 767-300ER and two Boeing 787-9. With already 12 dedicated cargo aircraft (ten Boeing 777-200F and two Boeing 737-800SF), Ethiopian Airlines has become the main carrier “of industrial products, mobile phones, computer equipment […]”, alongside medical products, particularly on the Africa-Asia axis, to Europe, South and North America. With fuel prices also favorable, Africa’s largest airline is one of the few in the world to make a profit in 2020.

“We took advantage of this opportunity at the right time. We have demonstrated agility, speed of decision-making and resilience; which has helped us, and helps us so far. We therefore have a very solid cash flow. So it’s an incredible performance, but it’s because we have developed an internal capacity suitable for any type of challenge over the past 10 years. So we did an incredible job. Our financial results remain positive ”, welcomes the CEO.