Air India Cargo to expand operations worldwide

Air India Cargo, the national carrier's cargo division, is surveying opportunities worldwide with the aim of expanding its network and reach to other markets.

According to Air India officials, the company plans to eventually operate five B737-200s, of which one has already commenced operation on the Delhi-Mumbai-Bangalore-Delhi route.

Aircraft from Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata and Chennai will discharge and exchange pallets at the central Indian city of Nagpur which will act as a hub.

Currently, the merged carrier operates one Boeing 737-200 aircraft for the Indian Department of Post and Telegraph between Kolkata, Guwahati, Imphal and Agartala in the northeast of the country.

It has also entered into a joint venture with logistics major Gati for operating a freighter service with Nagpur as the hub.

Officials said that survey teams have gone abroad to assess market potential in Hong Kong, Tokyo, Osaka, New York, Chicago, Toronto, Los Angeles and London. The country's flag carrier will also look at Australia and Africa.

The survey is likely to be completed by March 31, after which the company would settle on a forward-looking policy.