FedEx Abandons 3-Year Negotiations For Direct Service To Cuba

FedEx On 14 December 2018: 

“FedEx will not be filing for an extension of the start-up date for U.S. – Cuba cargo air service between Miami and Varadero (VRA.) We are evaluating alternative all-cargo service options to Cuba.” 

FedEx On 17 December 2018

“FedEx is returning its five weekly frequencies for Miami-Matanzas/Varadero air service, effective immediately, as it evaluates alternative all-cargo service options to Cuba.”

 Link To Text Of FedEx Letter To USDOT

Bloomberg News

New York, New York

2 January 2019 

(Bloomberg) -- FedEx Corp. dropped a plan to begin cargo flights to Cuba, as an opening between the U.S. and the communist country has foundered. 

The courier “will not be filing for an extension of the startup date for U.S.– Cuba cargo air service between Miami and Varadero,” FedEx said in a statement Wednesday. The company is abandoning its right to fly five weekly frequencies and evaluating “alternative all-cargo service options to Cuba,” according to a letter to the U.S. Department of Transportation. 

FedEx’s withdrawal ends more than two years of effort to start service to Cuba, which began as former President Barack Obama sought to normalize ties with the island. Relations have chilled under President Donald Trump, whose administration enacted new restrictions in 2017 on Americans traveling to Cuba and on the ability to do business with a list of government-controlled businesses. 

The Memphis, Tennessee-based company won U.S. approval for cargo flights to Cuba in 2016. The following year, FedEx cited a series of obstacles to starting the service, including finding local partners and securing airport ground services. Cuba currently is listed by the carrier as among the countries it doesn’t serve.


Air Caro News

Surrey, United Kingdom

3 January 2019 

FedEx has dropped plans to start a five-times-a-week freighter service between Miami and Matanzas/Varadero in Cuba.  

In a letter to the US Department of Transportation the express giant said it is returning its five-weekly frequencies "effective immediately" as it evaluates alternative all-cargo service options to Cuba.

The express firm had applied for several extension to the stipulated start-up date of services as it struggled to secure providers of air operation support services, Customs clearance and ground delivery.  

"The company must ensure these service providers would appropriately complement the express delivery services for which FedEx is world-renowned while simultaneously remaining within the limits of the existing, relevant US and Cuban laws, regulations and policies," it said in its latest extension request, dated June 14.  

FedEx was originally given permission in July 2016 to launch services between Cuba and the US, with a specified start date of April 2017.  

Relations between the US and Cuba have cooled since then after President Barack Obama, who sought to build a closer relationship with the country, left office. His successor, President Donald Trump, has brought in tighter controls on doing business in Cuba.  

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