LATAM completes fleet renewal with redelivery of 767-300BCF

LATAM Cargo took redelivery of a 767-300BCF (34629) from Boeing [FAT 005254] earlier this month following conversion to freighter configuration by Boeing at the ST Engineering Aerospace facility at Singapore’s Paya Lebar Air Base (QPG).

The aircraft was immediately placed on LATAM Cargo Colombia’s AOC and on Dec. 7, the aircraft commenced commercial revenue service with regular flights between Bogota (BOG) and Miami (MIA). The aircraft is the third of three BCFs LATAM ordered from Boeing in March 2018 when it decided to offload the final two remaining 777Fs in its fleet and opt for an all-767 freighter fleet.

In the past, LATAM’s freighter network focused on longer north-south segments and flights between South America and North America. The all-767 fleet continues to connect major cities in Latin America with Miami (MIA), but intra-South America flights are now a larger focus for the carrier.

Following this month’s redelivery, LATAM’s freighter fleet comprises of eight factory-built 767-300Fs and three 767-300BCFs. A ninth 767-300F (34627) is subleased to LATAM’s former affiliate, Mas Air.

While no further changes to the freighter fleet are currently planned, LATAM Cargo CEO, Andres Bianchi has previously told Cargo Facts the airline may consider narrowbody conversions, or the reintroduction of 777Fs in the future.

It remains to be seen how future fleet developments will be influenced by LATAM’s new investor, Delta Air Lines. In September, the Atlanta-based carrier announced it would invest US$1.9 billion for a 20% stake in the LATAM Group. Although regulatory approval is expected to take 1-2 years, the carriers will gradually increase codesharing.

Delta does not operate freighters of its own, but in recent years has doubled down on its cargo operation. Delta’s robust trans-Pacific network and belly capacity available on east-west flights could align well with LATAM’s Latin American network – but not immediately. For the month of October, Delta reported cargo traffic down 4.1% y-o-y to 231,000 revenue tonne kilometers. Year-to-date, Delta’s cargo traffic is down 8.5%.

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