The services, operated by European Cargo using Airbus A340-600s, were launched in April with Shenzhen Sharing Express Logistic-Tech Ltd, connecting Bournemouth with Chengdu Shuangliu International Airport 3 times a week.
Following the successful launch, capacity has been doubled to 6 flights a week, providing 76 tonnes of cargo capacity per flight.
The growing importance of the route was underlined by a trade mission between Sichuan Province and Bournemouth last month, which included signing a cargo development agreement between Sichuan Province Airport Group Company and Regional & City Airports, the owner of Bournemouth Airport.
Cargo First says a growing proportion of consignments from Chengdu, around 30%, are clearing customs locally in Bournemouth and bypassing Heathrow Airport warehouses for onward travel in the UK.
The Cargo First Logistics Park has over 1 million square feet of warehouse development potential, providing space for growth.
Steve Gill, Managing Director of Bournemouth Airport, says, “Doubling capacity on the Chengdu route is a huge vote of confidence in Bournemouth as an e-commerce gateway to the UK. Our combination of location, no slot constraints, flexibility and speed, plus European Cargo’s growing fleet capacity, is a winning combination.”
David Kerr, Chief Executive of European Cargo, adds, “As we expand our converted fleet beyond the current 4 aircraft to 10 over the next 18 months, we aim to grow with our partners and their respective shipper and consignee customers.”