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Romantic Russians have provided a business boost for AirBridgeCargo Airlines (ABC), the country’s largest cargo carrier, with a big rise in flower imports ahead of St. Valentine’s Day.

In the lead up to February 14th, ABC transported 1,400 tons of flowers from Amsterdam to Moscow, an 18% increase over the same period in 2013.

Denis Ilin, Executive President of AirBridgeCargo, said: “The demand for flowers in Russia is buoyant. The market is worth over US$1 billion a year and over 75% of flowers are imported, with

Amsterdam being a sort of pooling point for flowers coming from different parts of the world. That makes our scheduled B747 freighter services linking Amsterdam and Russia’s largest cities the first choice for flower importers that need a fast and reliable delivery service to ensure the freshness of their products.”

ABC is the largest importer of flowers to Russia. The carrier transports some 16,000 tonnes of cut flowers per year. The vast majority of cargo traffic goes to the Russian Far East: Novosibirsk, Yekaterinburg, Krasnoyarsk, and Khabarovsk.

March will see another peak in flower traffic for ABC related to another holiday –


A 103-ton turbine rotor has arrived in Yekaterinburg, Russia, onboard an An-124-100 Ruslan heavy freighter aircraft operated by Volga-Dnepr Airlines. The shipment was delivered from Frankfurt/Hahn.

The rotor was carried using bespoke transportation tooling and an entire day was required to prepare for offloading of the 103-ton shipment at Yekaterinburg’s Koltsovo Airport. The unloading process itself took some five hours to complete in

outdoor temperatures averaging -30°C. To place the single-piece cargo onto a trailer to be moved from the airport, Volga-Dnepr’s technical crew used a specially-designed ramp and a hydraulic crane with special rails. The ramp was set at the same angle as the aircraft ramp to ensure the safe unloading of the rotor using winches.

To lift the heavy cargo onto the 80-wheel trailer positioned parallel to the constructed ramp, Volga-Dnepr used a hydraulic crane. The airline managed the entire end-to-end transportation, including the appointment of a subcontractor to

operate the special loading equipment. Volga-Dnepr also obtained all necessary permits and arranged the delivery of the rotor from the airport to its installation site.

This was the first time such a piece of cargo had been delivered to Yekaterinburg by air.

AirBridgeCargo Airlines currently operates 8 weekly flights from Amsterdam to Moscow (SVO), 2 flights to Novosibirsk (OVB), 2 weekly flights to Yekaterinburg (SVX), 1 weekly flight to Khabarovsk (KHA), and 1 weekly flight to Krasnoyarsk (KJA).

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