Qatar’s new COC to build on Boeing partnership

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Speaking to Air Cargo Week, Mark Drusch, the newly appointed Chief Officer of Cargo at Qatar Airways, has emphasised the carrier’s confidence in its relationship with Boeing as it prepares to welcome a fleet of 777X freighters in 2027.

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“It’s a done deal with Boeing, and we’re very pleased with it”, Drusch stated, pointing to the scale model of the aircraft on display in his Doha office.

“We were the launch customer, so we’ve been able to work with Boeing to make it closer to our requirements. With the technology we will install, it will be a game changer.”

Key considerations

While acknowledging that the decision was finalised under his predecessor, Drusch highlighted three critical aspects of the aircraft that had led to the choice.

Firstly, with sustainability hot on the agenda, the fuel efficiency presented by the aircraft will help Qatar Cargo achieve its green goals. Consuming 25 per cent less fuel, the 777X freighter will not just cut CO2 emissions but reduce costs.

“It allows us to tap into other markets and build on existing markets because it’s less expensive for us to operate there, giving us an advantage – That’s number one,” Drusch outlined.

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Drusch hopes incorporating innovative developments into the aircraft will provide state-of-the-art technology and enhance customer capabilities: “We’ve got a whole range of cool things we’ve already laid out, and we’re going to put more stuff in.”

Thirdly, Qatar is confident in the aircraft’s overall performance. Once completed, Boeing has stated that the 777XF will be the most significant and longest-range twin-engine cargo plane on the market, with Drusch highlighting how it will “open up regions we couldn’t operate to before.”

Adding to the elements he could discuss, Drusch suggested more was in the pipeline. Qatar is still actively working alongside Boeing as the manufacturer moves towards the expected delivery date.

“When I met with the Boeing guys, we threw out another idea for them to look at regarding the aircraft,” he revealed. “Pie in the sky, big picture ideas. But that’s what I want to do. I want to push the envelope by thinking about what we do next.”

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Author: Edward Hardy