Air Belgium is adding the A330-200P2F platform to its fleet and will become the third carrier to operate the converted version of the shorter Airbus medium widebody.
A freshly converted A330-200P2F (832, ex-Etihad) belonging to Altavair has now been reregistered to Air Belgium in the Austrian aircraft register. The 2007-vintage aircraft, which had arrived at the ST Engineering facility in Singapore (SIN) in December 2021, made its first flight after conversion with Elbe Flugzeugwerke (EFW) on Aug. 3, and at press time, had just departed SIN.
Altavair previously told Cargo Facts that it expected to place unit 832 and another ex-Etihad A330-200P2F (717) with a European lessee by yearend. Unit 717 is also undergoing conversion at SIN, having arrived there in May.
Both aircraft have Rolls-Royce Trent 700 engines.
It is currently unclear whether Air Belgium will operate unit 832 on behalf of a customer. The carrier, which could not be reached for comment, currently flies two 2013-vintage 747-8Fs (37562 and 37563, both ex-Saudia) on a CMI basis for the China-based Hongyuan Group — which now holds a 49% stake in the Belgian airline — and four production A330-200Fs (1584, 1594, 1688 and 1708, all ex-Qatar Airways) owned by CMA CGM.
Air Belgium only began its foray into cargo by experimenting with cargo-only flights utilizing its passenger A340-300s during the COVID-19 pandemic. It recently replaced the older quad-engined aircraft with two A330neos.
EFW has redelivered two other A330-200P2Fs so far this year: both units (854 and 868, also ex-Etihad) were also for Altavair, which then leased them to Mexico-based Mas.
The only other operator of A330-200P2Fs is Egyptair, which received its third unit in late 2019.
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