Lufthansa Cargo opens Dublin link

On March 15th Lufthansa Cargo operated its first Dublin/Frankfurt service using its recently delivered and converted Airbus A321F freighter aircraft. The Dublin service links to an additional Frankfurt based Lufthansa Cargo short-haul network which includes Istanbul, Malta, Tunis, Tel Aviv. Manchester and Cairo. This network is very much focused on eCommerce and the aircraft can take a payload of 28 tonnes being shipped on 24 pallets making full use of the A321F’s main deck and lower deck capacity.

The COVID pandemic has completely distorted an airfreight market in which up to 60% of cargo carried by air did so using the lower holds of passenger aircraft. As these planes were taken out of service, a number were part-converted into freighters and the operators were able to generate significant revenue from the prevailing high freight rates. It has also become clear that passenger volumes, particularly on “business” routes, would be very slow to return, and that more committed freighter capacity was needed.

Other carriers are likely to follow the Lufthansa Cargo example while a further development has been the emergence of Shipping Lines including, CMA CGM, Samskip and Maersk as owners or operators of freighter aircraft.


CMA CGM offers trailer slots on Brittany Ferries Services.

Following its investment in Brittany Ferries late last year, CMA CGM has followed through on its commitment to increase the Ferry company’s focus on freight transport.

CMA CGM has developed a network of Freight ferry services out of its home port of Marseilles to Morocco, Algeria, and Libya, connecting also to Barcelona and Genoa, operating under the SSL MED EXPRESS brand. These services carry trailers, containers, and out of gauge cargo. In January 2022 CMA CGM and Brittany announced a co-operation enabling the deep-sea container company to feed containers from its Le Havre terminal to Portsmouth on board the Brittany Ferries service using quay to quay flat trailers, a similar type of operation to that offered by P&O Ferries and Seatruck on their Liverpool services.

This has now been followed up by the establishment of a slot charter arrangement for both accompanied and unaccompanied trailers on the Brittany Ferry services linking Rosslare with Bilbao, Cherbourg, and Le Havre. The new arrangement facilitates through bookings from Ireland to North Africa using the SSL MED EXPRESS services.

CMA CGM has also announced an agreement to acquire a majority shareholding in the French last mile delivery company Colis Prive, furthering its spread into third-party logistics and e-commerce as part of its strategy to be an integrated provider of supply chain services. Colis Prive will operate within the CEVA Forwarding Group which already has an e-commerce business service ability worth $4.2 trillion.


Dublin Inland Port opens.

Dublin Port Company has opened the first stage of its Dublin Inland Port facility which is located close to the junction between the M50 and N2 and close to Dublin Airport. The site extends for 44 hectares with the initial 7-hectare section developed as an empty container storage and maintenance facility. The license to operate that facility has been awarded to Dublin Ferry Terminals (DFT) who are operating it under the brand name, Dublin Ferryport Inland depot.

Dublin Port Company expects that the development of the empty container facility and the planned later development of full container handling operation in the second stage, will result in the more efficient use of the Dublin Port Tunnel and of Dublin Port’s internal road network by diverting HGV’s dropping off or collecting empty containers. The three major port terminal operators anticipate that the freeing up of space will enable them to significantly improve container throughput.


Written by:

Howard Knott

IEA Logistics Consultant