Japan’s major airlines will run dedicated air freight services between Perth and Tokyo in the new year, to help exporters struggling due to COVID-19 travel restrictions.
All Nippon Airways (ANA) and Japan Airlines (JAL) are introducing non-stop freighter services between the two cities in January and February.
Perth Airport Senior VP Aviation Business Development said Stephanie Juszkiewicz said the flights were designed to increase export opportunities between WA and Japan during COVID.
“Pre Covid-19, ANA operated a daily passenger service between Perth and Tokyo, with freight carried in the cargo hold,” she explained.
“With our international borders currently closed and passenger travel restricted, there is still the need to transport goods so we see both airlines from Japan adapting and providing a freight only service in the new year.
“If the demand is there, it is likely the services will be extended.”
Rock lobster, stone fruit, honey and beef are among the products WA producers could export, with opportunities to connect beyond Tokyo to South Korea and Taiwan.
International Trade and Investment Centre (ITIC) Manager Mike Carter said the flights would provide greater access to the market by allowing businesses to expand their international footprints.
“This is a great opportunity to build on what is already a well-established bilateral trade relationship WA has had with Japan since the 1960s, at a time businesses are looking to de-risk and diversify to develop new export markets and/or global supply channels,” he said.
“It is also a great opportunity to leverage the benefits of the two free trade agreements between Japan and Australia – the Japan Australia Economic Partnership Agreement and the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership .”
Japan is WA’s second largest export market, worth $23 billion annually and Japan is WA’s fourth largest import market, with the value of those imports at $2.7b.
The flights will have up to 24 tonnes capacity each and will cater for exports and imports.
During the last six months CCIWA has undertaken several in-market virtual programs to connect WA food and wine companies to opportunities in Japan, working with Austrade, Tradestart and State Government Departments of Primary Industries and Regional Development, and Jobs, Tourism, Science and Innovation.
ANA will run two services a week from January 4 to February 28 – the first arriving in Perth on Mondays at 20:30 and departing on Tuesdays at 21:55 and the second arriving on Wednesdays at 20:30 and departing Thursdays at 21:55.
JAL’s freight service will run from January 12 to February 28, arriving in Perth on Tuesdays at 20:00 and departing Wednesdays at 20:00.
To find out more about exporting or importing from Japan contact ITIC at firstname.lastname@example.org or 9365 7620.