Luxembourg continues to look for an investor willing to take the 35% stake in Cargolux formerly held by Qatar Airways. Most lists of interested parties focus on China’s HNA Group and Moscow-based Volga-Dnepr Group (VDG), but a new bidder – Henan Civil Aviation Development and Investment Company (HNCA) – is reported to have begun negotiations for the stake. HNCA, an investment arm of the government of China’s Henan province, is also in the process of setting up a joint-venture carrier that would be 60% owned by China Southern Airlines. The status of the negotiations between HNCA and Luxembourg regarding the Cargolux stake has not been made public, but HNCA seems a more likely candidate than Volga-Dnepr. AirBridge Cargo, VDG’s scheduled service subsidiary recently saw its Air Cargo Germany joint venture fail, and VDG is widely reported to be struggling financially in the face of falling demand at both its core outsize and heavylift charter business (Volga-Dnepr Airlines) as well as at AirBridge.
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