Etihad Crystal Cargo, a division of Etihad Airways, will launch a twice weekly service from its hub at Abu Dhabi International Airport to Beijing, China.

The service will commence operations on August 11, 2010, and deploy the airline’s MD11 freighter with a payload of 88 metric tonnes on the route.

Roy Kinnear, Senior Vice President of Etihad Crystal Cargo, said: “We are delighted to announce our first dedicated freighter service to Beijing.

“Our operations to Beijing will reinforce Etihad’s position in the Chinese market, adding to our existing five times a week passenger service between Abu Dhabi and Beijing. We look forward to strengthening the trade ties between China and the UAE through this new cargo route.”

With its fleet of two Airbus A300-600 aircraft and two MD11s, Etihad Crystal Cargo has 22 cargo freighter destinations in the Middle East and Africa and 70 destinations across the globe.