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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Freight Jumbo Urged

TORONTO -- European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus Industrie should launch its proposed new A3XX super-jumbo jet as a freighter even before it rolls out the passenger version, said Michael Chowdry, head of freight aircraft leasing at charter firm Atlas Air.

The strongest interest in the aircraft is coming from the cargo community, which sees it as the most cost-effective, cargo-friendly design of any large freighter in service or on the drawing board, Chowdry, Atlas' chairman, president and chief executive said in a telephone interview last week.

While Airbus is suggesting deliveries of passenger A3XX aircraft could begin in 2005, followed by a freighter variant two years later, Chowdry said Airbus should look at launching the A3XX freighter first.