Business

AliExpress is sending parcels from China to Brazil and Chile through a new agreement with Atlas Air

According to the company, flights are being chartered by a partnership between Alibaba's logistics affiliate, Cainiao, and freight forwarder Sinotrans

747-400F Atlas Air aircraft
Atlas Air started weekly flights from Hong Kong to São Paulo and Santiago using a 747-400F aircraft. Photo: Jeff Gilbert/WikimediaCommons
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  • The measure, according to the executive, has the objective of guaranteeing the delivery time of parcels coming from China to the Latin American country despite the COVID-19 pandemic setbacks;
  • The first flight arrived in Brazil on June 6.

In an interview with LABS, Ken Huang, Alibaba’s Head in Latin America, said that the company closed an agreement for two weekly flights between China and Brazil and Chile with the airline cargo company Atlas Air. The measure, according to the executive, has the objective of guaranteeing the delivery time of parcels despite the COVID-19 pandemic setbacks. 

READ ALSO: AliExpress’ strategy to take e-commerce live streaming phenomenon to Brazil

Brazil is always among the company’s five largest markets, and Latin America is the second-largest-growing market for e-commerce in the world.

Flights are being chartered by a partnership between Alibaba’s logistics affiliate, Cainiao, and the freight integrator Sinotrans. According to Air Cargo World, Cainiao’s first freight flight to Latin America arrived at Guarulhos International Airport, in the São Paulo region, on June 6.

Despite not facing restrictions to enter the Latin American markets, cargo traffic was indirectly affected by the drastic reduction in passenger transport. This is because orders made through an international e-commerce website are generally carried on the lower deck of aircraft carrying passengers.

READ ALSO: In Brazil, international air transport dropped 97% during May

Contracts with specialized cargo companies are a temporary solution, but they should continue for a long time, since the international passenger flow is expected to take years to return to the level before the pandemic. The International Air Transport Association (IATA) itself believes that in 2025 the airline industry will still be at least 10% smaller than it was 2019.

READ ALSO: E-commerce is saving logistics companies in Mexico

In May, AliExpress launched AliExpress Direct, a new service that coordinates all sellers and, therefore, can consolidate all products from the same user in one shipment. Direct shipping fee is US$ 3 (BRL 14), but if the total payment exceeds US$ 30 (BRL 140), AliExpress Direct fee will be free. In other words, users will be able to enjoy free shipping on AliExpress Direct orders over US$ 30. Currently, the new service is available for most products under $10 (BRL 46).