A WINNIPEG, CANADA-based cargo consortium is negotiating to set up an international freight operation, using two wet-leased Boeing 747-200 Combis, which Air Canada is due to retire in 1997. The Winnport consortium plans to convert the aircraft to full freighters.

Air Canada would maintain the aircraft and be guaranteed space on flights. Winnipeg's airport, open 24h a day, would be the hub and distribution centre for trucks serving markets in the USA and Canada.

The consortium includes Air Canada, trucking companies and Canada's national railways. Its goal is to launch the venture by the third quarter of this year, possibly wet leasing freighters from other operators until Air Canada's 747s are available.

Source: Flight International