Comac is a Chinese state-owned manufacturer. Today it has secured airworthiness approval from CAAC, the Civil Aviation Administration of China, for its ARJ21 passenger-to-freighter program. This move will allow the aircraft manufacturer to convert ARJ21s to freighter units.
With this approval, Comac hopes to become the leading option for freighter operations in the regional cargo market. The maximum payload is expected at 10t, meaning the aircraft can transport sizes such as PAG, AKE and PMC.
The ARJ family from Comac will expand in the future with more offerings to suit more customers. Adding a freighter unit will only boost interest in the program per Comac.
Per Cirium data, 88 ARJ21-700s are currently in service. 14 in storage and 335 on order.
2022 was an important year for Comac in terms of announcements. 2023 is shaping up to be an incredibly fundamental year, with program announcements, orders and the re-opening of China.