Dulles - Chateauroux Create International Air Cargo Alliance

Published: March 11, 1999


Alexandria, VA The Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority, operator of Washington Dulles International Airport, and Chateauroux-Deols Airport in France joined together in an air cargo alliance agreement. This agreement is the first step in the creation of a worldwide organization of airports joining together to promote and develop their air cargo and logistics businesses.

Today's unique alliance agreement, signed by James A. Wilding, President and CEO of the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority and Senator Francois Gerbaud, President of the Chateauroux-Deols Airport, represents an innovative approach to air cargo development. The agreement is intended to: raise awareness of air cargo users of the advantages of shipping via airport alliance partners; develop additional cargo-aviation business alliances; attract additional cargo services, and set service standards among alliance partners.

The United States and Chateauroux-Deols Airport have a long history, dating back to 1950 when the airport was officially was handed over to the United States Army under the NATO agreement. For 17 years, the U.S. Armed Forces made the airport and Indre County its first European base and built an infrastructure of runways, aircraft parking and warehouses. During the height of the base operations, more than 8,600 Americans lived in Indre County. Although the base has been closed since 1967, the residents of Indre County have organized reunions for United States veterans.

"This alliance reflects the importance each airport has in its respective nation in terms of cargo services and promoting economic growth," said Mr. Wilding. "As we bridge the oceans with this agreement, we hope to initiate the creation of a global network of airports dedicated to air cargo development."

The alliance partners will participate in joint marketing/promotional events, shared business development, initiate an educational program with summer internships for each airport, and establish an Internet site.