The carrier is the first customer to be handled by the company at the CenterPoint freight terminal
SriLankan Airlines has become the first new customer of AT Worldwide Flight Services’ (WFS) CenterPoint cargo handling terminal at London Heathrow.
The carrier signed a 32-month contract with the company, which is set to commence in September, to provide freight handling and airside transport for its flights connecting the British capital and Colombo.
With a weekly service on this route already in motion, the airline hopes to increase the frequency as the aviation industry continues with its recovery.
Prior to the Covid-19 outbreak, SirLankan handled around 9,500 tonnes of cargo each year between the two countries.
“As London Heathrow represents a key cargo hub and gateway for the SriLankan Airlines’ cargo network, we are encouraged of the future successes and benefits for SriLankan Cargo customers through the partnership with WFS for managing cargo handling operations, primarily in the handling of the varied commodities uplifted on the route,” said Chamara Ranasinghe, head of cargo at SriLankan Airlines. “Such strong partnerships add value and consistency to customers during these tumultuous times and this is an ideal venture supporting the intended expansion of SriLankan Airlines’ operations into London Heathrow in the near future.”
WFS currently operates more than 350,000 sq ft of freight facilities at Heathrow. Over the past year, the UK operation landed a new contract with Gulf Air and extended its existing partnership with Vietnam airlines.
The new facility, which opened earlier this summer, helps the company to provide cargo handling at the London base whilst supporting Heathrow’s World Cargocentre. This building is also set to house further clients as the firm grows it portfolio, which currently stands at 14 international airlines.
Paul Carmody, WFS managing director of UK Cargo, added: “While our cargo volumes have been resilient, the expected resumption of more passenger services ex Heathrow in the coming weeks and months is very welcome news. The addition of CenterPoint, alongside our on-airport cargo terminals at Heathrow, means WFS is especially well-placed to support our current and new airline clients as their cargo volumes grow back to 2019 levels.”