Oslo opens new salmon air route to China – via Kazakhstan

The Capital Airlines aircraft at Oslo prepares for first flight

A new direct salmon air route between Norway and China has just been launched from Oslo.

The interesting aspect is that the plane travels via the former Soviet republic of  Kazakhstan, close to Russia, an area of the world avoided by western fish air carriers since the start of the Ukraine war.

The first consignment of 210 tonnes was flown to the Chinese market recently by a Hongyuan Group cargo plane.

Avinor, which runs Oslo Airport, said the new freight route will connect the Norwegian capital directly to Chengdu Tianfu International Airport with a stopover in Astana, Kazakhstan.

“This freight route is an important measure to meet the growing demand for efficient transport of goods, especially seafood, between Norway and China,” it adds.

Avinor shipping manager Eva Beate Lande said: “This marks an important milestone, and represents a significant opportunity for the seafood industry in Norway.”

The flight has been set up by the Hongyuan Group, while the plane itself is operated by Beijing Capital Airlines.

The route will operate three times weekly on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, operated by an Airbus A330-300, with ambitions to increase the frequency in the short term if they fill the aircraft.

Eva Lande added: “With a capacity to send 210 tonnes of fresh fish directly to the Chinese market every week, we shorten the transport time significantly.

“We have seen a sharp increase in seafood exports to China since 2019, and now that the market is opening up after the restrictions of the pandemic, it is crucial to have direct routes like this to support further growth.”

The aircraft brings goods from China on the return journey.


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