Israeli airline EL AL has signed cargo interline agreements with Bamboo Airways and Astral Airlines as it looks to expand its reach in Southeast Asia and Africa.
The interline agreement with Vietnam’s Bamboo Airways is the first agreement between the two companies and comes into effect immediately, covering both belly and freighter operations – EL AL recently acquired a Boeing 737-800 converted freighter.
EL AL said that the two agreements would allow the carrier to “significantly expand” its route network.
Ronen Shapira, director of EL AL’s cargo division, said: “The new agreement [with Bamboo Airways] enables EL AL to use many versatile distribution centers around the world with Bamboo Airlines, which is a commercial airline, for the first time.
“At the same time, we are working on additional plans in order to deepen and expand the cooperation between the companies.
“In the long term, we understand that there is a need to prepare for new markets that will arise according to changes in the worlds of industry and commerce, changes that have also put Vietnam on the map with a massive transfer of production from China to it.
“The new agreements signed are part of the strategic plan, which will make it possible to turn Israel into a hub that connects it to various destinations around the world, including destinations to which we do not operate non-stop flights.”
On the partnership with Astral, he added: “We are aware that the global and regional shifts, especially in Africa, will create new opportunities and challenges for EL AL.
“Therefore, we are planning ahead to adapt to the changing industrial and commercial landscapes and to seize the potential growth in the future markets.”
The airline also has cargo agreements in place with Etihad Airways, LATAM, Air China, Thai Cargo, Ethiopian Airlines, Pegasus, Japan Airlines and ANA.
Meanwhile, it has recently launched a non-stop service to New Delhi and will add flights to Mumbai in October.