Ethiopian Airlines (EA) and Boeing have announced that EA’s all-Boeing cargo fleet will be expanded even further.
Ethiopian Airlines has placed an order for five Boeing 777 Freighters as part of a “longstanding” collaboration with Boeing, according to a joint statement made on May 25, 2022.
“The addition of these five B777 Freighters into our cargo fleet will enable us to meet the growing demand in our cargo operation. While cementing our partnership with the Boeing Company with new orders, the growth of our freighter fleet takes the capacity and efficiency of our shipment service to the next level,” said Mesfin Tasew, Ethiopian Airlines Group CEO.
According to the statement and commercial fleet information on the airline’s website, this new freighter capacity will join the airline group’s all-Boeing fleet, which currently comprises of three 737-800 converted freighters and nine Boeing B777-200LRF.
Ethiopian Airlines has also placed an order for a Boeing B737-800SF.
Ethiopian Airlines and Boeing made the news after both sides signed a Memorandum of Understanding in March 2022 with the intention of purchasing five 777-8 Freighters.
In a statement dated March 4, 2022, EA outlined that the intent to purchase new Boeing 777X freighters capacity would enable the carrier to “meet expanding global cargo demand from its hub in Addis Ababa and position the carrier for long-term sustainable growth.”
Boeing’s 777 Freighter “is the world’s largest, longest-range twin-engine freighter,” according to the joint statement.
The 777 Freighter uses 17 percent less fuel and emits 17 percent fewer emissions than earlier airplane models, has a range of 4,970 nautical miles (9,200 km), and a maximum structural payload of 107 tonnes (235,900 pounds).
This enables EA “to connect Africa with 66 dedicated cargo centers throughout Asia, Europe, the Middle East and the Americas.”
Ethiopian Cargo and Logistics Services, according to the announcement, provides belly hold capacity as well as dedicated freighter services to 127 foreign locations throughout the world.
Boeing’s senior vice president of commercial sales and marketing, Ihssane Mounir, responded to the news of the order.
“We value the trust that Ethiopian Airlines places in the 777 Freighter to support their cargo ambitions which will provide them with increased capability and flexibility to their operations,” said Mounir.
Mounir added, “Additional 777 Freighters will enable Ethiopian to capitalize on near-term cargo demand while positioning the airline for further expansion in the future.”
EA has a combined passenger fleet of over 80 Boeing jets, including 737s, 767s, 787s, and 777s, in addition to its cargo fleet.