The southern Chinese city of Shenzhen has launched a freighter service to Hong Kong to meet a lack of trucking capacity as a result of Covid-19 outbreaks.
According to the Xinhua news agency, the service will operate six times per week utilising a B767 freighter operated by SF Airlines.
The first flight of the new service, which is initially planned to run until April, took off on March 19.
Although the two locations are located less than 50 miles from each other, land transport between Hong Kong and Shenzhen has been heavily hit by strict Covid restrictions.
The service will carry Covid-19 medical and protective goods for Hong Kong and help meet companies transport requirements in Shenzhen and neighboring regions.
The lack of trucking capacity was recently highlighted by Cathay Pacific as one of the reasons for a weak cargo volumes at the start of the year.
And last week, Air Cargo News reported that Shenzhen had gone into lockdown – with restrictions since being eased – forcing several companies to pause manufacturing activities.
“Cross-border trucking capacity continues to be very limited and terminals are seeing shortages in manpower,” said forwarder Flexport in an update on the airfreight market.
“As a result of these issues rates have increased compared to the prior week. The market ex-SZX/CAN is hot as many customers are experiencing cross-border limitations with HKG, resulting in rate increases.”