SHANGHAI Feb 23 Boeing Co said it was
planning to deliver its first tranche of revamped old passenger
jets to be used as freight haulers in China by the end of the
year, amid a boom in e-commerce that is driving China's parcel
Boeing will have the revamped versions of the popular
737-800 passenger jet ready for delivery in the fourth quarter
of 2017, Anbessie Yitbarek, Boeing's vice president of customer
support for Asia Pacific told the official Xinhua news agency.
"In emerging markets, led by China, we've seen huge demand
for freighters from e-commerce and express delivery entities,"
Yitbarek said, adding China made up half of all orders. "China
has the strongest demand for standard-body freighters."
A company spokesman confirmed the accuracy of the comments
about the Boeing converted freighter (BCF) programme.
"Boeing has received up to 60 orders and commitments for the
737-800BCF. We are on schedule to re-deliver the first
737-800BCF in the fourth quarter of 2017," he said in emailed
comments to Reuters on Thursday.
The conversions will be done at Boeing Shanghai Aviation
Services and Taikoo (Shandong) Aircraft Engineering (STAECO),
Boeing sells three types of dedicated freighters from the
mid-sized 767 up to the larger 777 and the 747-8 jumbo. It also
offers passenger-to-freight conversions of its mid-sized 767.
Last year, the planemaker estimated demand for 1,440
converted freighters and 930 new ones over two decades.
(Reporting by Adam Jourdan and Brenda Goh; Editing by Himani