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Kenya Airways gets approval to convert Dreamliner into cargo carrier


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Kenya Airways gets approval to convert Dreamliner into cargo carrier


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A KQ Dreamliner aircraft. FILE PHOTO | NMG

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Summary

  • The Kenya Civil Aviation Authority (KCAA) has approved Kenya Airways request to convert some of its large passenger aircraft into freighters.
  • The move by KCAA to approve the Boeing 787 Dreamliner for cargo use comes just weeks after the US-based Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) gave KQ a greenlight for the same.
  • This will see KQ increase the available capacity at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport by over 100 tonnes, coming as a boost to exporters, especially horticulture farmers.

The Kenya Civil Aviation Authority (KCAA) has approved Kenya Airways’ request to convert some of its large passenger aircraft into freighters.

The move by KCAA to approve the Boeing 787 Dreamliner for cargo use comes just weeks after the US-based Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) gave KQ a greenlight for the same.

This will see KQ increase the available capacity at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport by over 100 tonnes, coming as a boost to exporters, especially horticulture farmers.

KCAA director general Gilbert Kibe told the Business Daily that the agency made the approval last week on Friday.

“We have approved Kenya Airways request of turning the Dreamliner into a freighter and they can use it world-wide for cargo purposes,” said Mr Kibe.

KQ had earlier opened negotiations with leasers to have it allowed to remove seats in some of the Dreamliner aircraft and convert them into freighters.

The airline said the move will help it to use its Boeing 787 aircraft for long haul cargo services between Africa and other continents and also carry high volumes.

At the moment the airline relies on its two short haul aircraft for transportation of cargo meant for the region.

During the lockdown, the airline converted some of its Boeing 787 aircraft into freighters. However, they did not remove seats to accommodate more freight. The move could only see the carrier ferry close to 50 percent of goods.

Mr Kibe said they have approved one of the planes with the remaining one to be approved later when the carrier makes an application. KQ is converting two of its Dreamliner into freighters but only made an application for one to KCAA.



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