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BARCELONA: December 11, 2018. Etihad Airways has begun operating a five times weekly service between Abu Dhabi and Barcelona that will become a daily frequency in March next year.

Combined with its daily Madrid flight, launched in 2015, the airline now offers more than 23,000 tons per year of cargo capacity for the Spanish market. In addition, trucking services from gateways across Europe further compliment the network, offering customers greater reach and faster delivery times.

BCN EtihadAbdulla Mohamed Shadid, Etihad Airways managing director Cargo and Logistics said: “2018 has been a very successful year for Etihad Cargo, with positive progress achieved across our fleet and network optimization, our products development and enhancement, and our digital transformation.

“More recently, following our decision to deploy additional capacity to key markets such as China, India and Vietnam, as well as an aircraft dedicated for charters to meet fourth quarter demand, this Barcelona service marks a timely addition to the network. We are encouraged by the demand demonstrated by the market for this service and delighted to see the inaugural flight carrying 17.6 Tonnes of cargo.”

Etihad Cargo first started operating in Spain as on off-line carrier, sending shipments to Paris and Amsterdam via truck to feed into the Etihad network across the GCC, Africa, Indian subcontinent, Southeast Asia and Australia.

Barcelona airport operator Aena reported handling 100,104 tons in October, an 8.8 percent rise from the same month last year.

The airports with the highest freight traffic in October were Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas with nearly 48,859 tons (+5.8 percent), Zaragoza with 19,541 tons (+13.8 percent) and Barcelona-El Prat with 17,780 tons (+14.6 percent).

From January to October, airports in Aena’s network as a whole handled 835,330 tons of freight, up 10.7 percent over the same months in 2017.

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