International Airlines has postponed its resumption of scheduled all-cargo
service to the Russian Far East.
US cargo carrier says unfavorable economic conditions have forced it to shelve
previous plans to resume flights this fall between Russian Far East, Alaska and
Hong Kong. Evergreen, however, has benefited from a recovery this year in its
largest market, the Pacific Rim.
has recorded $8.8 million in profits for the first half of 2002, a dramatic
improvement compared with the $22.3 million loss over the same period last
year. The carrier credits the turn-around to increased demand for its
trans-Pacific airfreight network, which accounts for about 95% of its revenues.
Sagging demand for its Asian services last year dragged down Evergreen’s
financials, prompting the carrier to seek a federal loan guarantee.
last September, Evergreen served four Russian Far East cities – Khabarovsk,
Petropavlovsk, Vladivostok and Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk. The carrier operated three
weekly Boeing 747 flights into the region, with service to both Anchorage and
must operate flights at least every 90 days to retain its Russian route
authority or secure an exemption from US Department of Transportation (DOT)
dormancy regulations. Evergreen secured a dormancy waiver early this year to
retain its Russian rights through 8 November and had told the DOT it planned to
resume service by this date. But the carrier yesterday asked the DOT for an
extension of this waiver.
have clearly not improved and Evergreen simply is not in a position to resume
service on an economic basis in the foreseeable future,” Evergreen tells the
DOT. “Nevertheless, Evergreen remains committed to resuming service when
warranted by traffic demands and extension of the present waiver will enable
Evergreen to accomplish that goal in an orderly and efficient manner.”
the Evergreen suspension, there are no scheduled passenger or cargo services
linking Alaska and the nearby Russian Far East. But industry officials in
Alaska say several carriers are exploring establishing new links to exploit the
discovery of oil in far northeastern Russia. The officials say energy companies
need to fly in infrastructure to support possible exploration efforts in
northeastern Russia and the easiest connection is for flights from Alaska given
the state’s large oil industry. The new flights may link the Russian Far East
with Barrow, a town in the oil-rich north slope of Alaska that has US Customs