Swiss aviation services company Swissport has handled the maiden flight of Salam Air Cargo at Muscat International Airport (MCT) in Oman.

The company has been offering ramp handling and passenger services to Salam Air in Muscat since 2018.

Swissport Oman managing director Ivana Meyer said: “We are very excited to handle the first ever all-cargo flight of an Omani airline and support Salam Air in starting their cargo business.

“Swissport is ready to provide service excellence as required by the customer and provide any support needed to help drive Salam Air’s growth.”

Salam Air plans to operate several cargo flights on a weekly basis from Muscat to various destinations worldwide.

These will include Dhaka and Chittagong’s Shah Amanat International Airport in Bangladesh, Mumbai in India, Istanbul in Turkey, Khartoum in Sudan and others.

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For these services, Salam Air will use Airbus A321, a passenger-to-freighter converted aeroplane that has the capacity to carry a payload of up to 27t.

The Omani budget airline has been facilitating passenger travel to Europe, the Middle East, Asia and Africa since 2017.

The launch of a cargo business is said to be part of its strategic plan to bolster its position in the industry.

Salam Air Ground Operations director Mohsin Albalushi said: “Our successful partnership with Swissport in Oman led to the decision that they are the right partner to handle our cargo flights.

“We have full confidence that our extended collaboration which also includes cargo handling, will be a full success and support Salam Air’s further growth.”

Earlier this month, Canadian air carrier WestJet expanded its partnership with Swissport in Hawaii.

Under the contract, Swissport will offer its ground services to WestJet at all four destinations it serves on the islands.

The contract will also add Kona International Airport (KOA) on the Big Island to Swissport’s global network.