Singapore Airlines Wins Contract To Operate DHL 777F Cargo Operations

Credit: DHL

SINGAPORE—Singapore Airlines (SIA) has secured a crew and maintenance agreement with DHL that will see the German logistics provider station five of its Boeing 777F fleet in Singapore.

SIA will operate the aircraft on DHL’s behalf and provide maintenance services throughout the initial four-year period. This is the first time DHL is basing aircraft in Singapore.

The aircraft will sport a dual SIA-DHL livery and be manned by SIA pilots while SIA Engineering Company will perform the maintenance. The first aircraft is set to be delivered in July, followed by a second in October. The remaining three aircraft are planned for delivery throughout 2023.

SIA and DHL say the aircraft will link North America with Singapore via stops in East Asia such as Hong Kong and Nagoya, Japan.

“This new freighter operation will support the fast-growing e-commerce segment,” SIA’s EVP of commercial Lee Lik Hsin says. “It also provides a foundation on which the partnership between SIA and DHL can be further expanded in the future.”

Credit: SIA

“This new agreement guarantees capacity on our critical routes out of Singapore as we gear up for ongoing growth in Asia-Pacific trade,” DHL Express Asia-Pacific CEO Ken Lee says. “It gives us greater flexibility to add new routes and optimize our aircraft utilization in the face of unpredictable changes or sudden increases in demand.”

Since the onset of the pandemic, DHL has regularly increased capacity to Asia-Pacific through its Singapore and Hong Kong processing stations via charter flights with AeroLogic and Kalitta Air.

The partnership comes at a time when Hong Kong, the world’s busiest air cargo transhipment hub, has tightened its zero-COVID policies and crew quarantine rules. FedEx has closed its pilot base in Hong Kong and Cathay Pacific has said it has been difficult to add cargo capacity simply because of the pilot quarantine rule.

Chen Chuanren

Chen Chuanren is the Southeast Asia and China Editor for the Aviation Week Network’s (AWN) Air Transport World (ATW) and the Asia-Pacific Defense Correspondent for AWN, joining the team in 2017.