Air Cargo
24. March 2021

INTERVIEW WITH CHRISTOFFEL NIELEN

Mr. Christoffel Nielen is the Vice President – Sales & Marketing EMEA (Europe, Africa & the Middle East) at Cargolux. He has been in the industry over amazing 20 years. Prior to his current role, Mr. Nielen was the VP – Sales & Marketing at Cargolux. He had worked as Regional Commercial Manager at IAG Cargo (British Airways & Iberia Cargo) and Area Commercial Manager – East & Central Europe with British Airways World Cargo.


1. Cargolux has a strong commitment to maintain high standards when it comes to pharma a healthcare products handling. What solutions are you offering in order to provide a seamless service despite the current pandemic situation?
Cargolux is a recognized industry leader when it comes to the transport of medical commodities including pharmaceutical goods, vaccines, and relief material. The airline has a dedicated transport solution, CV pharma, to match each shipment’s specific needs. The fleet of dedicated freighters boasts four independently controlled temperature zones to ensure constant temperature levels within each zone throughout the handling process. Cargolux was the first airline in the world to achieve GDP certification in 2014 and passed its latest re-certification audit at the beginning of 2021. Transporting vaccines and pharmaceuticals in general is part of Cargolux’s everyday mission. We are experts in the handling of these delicate commodities and have the necessary infrastructure to guarantee seamless transport for these shipments.
The current situation has put pressure on supply chains, especially with limited capacity in the air cargo market. Since the beginning of the outbreak, Cargolux has contributed its expertise and worked together with its partners to ensure communities were equipped to face the crisis. The company has demonstrated incredible flexibility within its operation to cater for COVID-19 limitations such as travel restrictions. The network and market demand are under continuous evaluation to ensure our global customer base can be served despite changing conditions.

2. Would you please tell us a little more about the UNICEF Humanitarian Airfreight Initiative, that you have recently joined?
The project aims to prioritize the delivery of vital healthcare products, including COVID-19 vaccines, to curb the global pandemic. Cargolux is proud to be part of this initiative and leverage its expertise to contribute to this vaccination effort. This initiative is fully aligned with the airline’s values and it was therefore natural for us to take part in this project.

3. We can consider Cargolux to be an industry leader when it comes to the transportation of exclusive commodities. Have you invested in any technologies to ensure continuous protection of precious cargo during the handling and transport?
Transporting fragile artwork requires special attention, often involving months of careful planning and coordination. The airline has a long history in the shipment of priceless items and sensitive commodities. Our expert teams are well-versed in the transportation of sensitive and precious cargo and meticulously plan each shipment to ensure a smooth transport process. A successful endeavor requires not only the use of customized packaging but also extra careful handling, both on the ground as well as in the air.
To ensure the highest standards for precious cargo, Cargolux continuously assesses its procedures and protocols to identify areas of potential improvements. The company is committed to ensuring seamless solutions to preserve the shipment’s condition. The airline is determined to remain at the forefront of the industry in terms of products and explores innovative options to maintain this position.

4. What is your opinion about positioning WOF EXPO in Central and Eastern Europe region?
Central and Eastern Europe are fast emerging as important transit hubs for cargo in Europe and an increasingly important stopover for global trade. Cargolux has extensive Road Feeder Services in Europe and can offer tailored services to customers throughout the continent. This budding market is an opportunity for development in air cargo and we should aim to promote harmonious and transparent services to serve all players in the supply chain. Cargolux has also recently increased its presence in Budapest, a fast-growing transit airport in the heart of continental Europe. The increased demand through BUD is a reflection of the region’s growing commercial importance.


Cargolux is Europe’s largest all cargo carrier and boasts a modern fleet of purpose-built 747-400 and 747-8 freighters. Cargolux was the launch customer for both these aircraft types which it continues to operate to move valuable and time-sensitive commodities worldwide. Cargolux has established itself as a high-quality, reliable air cargo carrier committed to service excellence. The airline offers a customized portfolio of products dedicated to specific shipment types to ensure live animals, perishables or outsized freight are expertly handled.

www.cargolux.com