May 17, 2020

Cyprus Airways now defunct, but where have its planes gone?

European logistics
Air freight
air cargo
Cyprus Airways
2 min
The company's 10-year old aircraft are now being stored. But where?
Follow @SamJermy and @SupplyChainD on Twitter.The Cypriot national carrier, Cyprus Airways, ceased operations last Friday after being ordered by the EU...

Follow @SamJermy and @SupplyChainD on Twitter.


The Cypriot national carrier, Cyprus Airways, ceased operations last Friday after being ordered by the EU Commission to repay over €65 million (£50 million) in illegal state aid.

EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said Cyprus Airways had no chance of becoming viable without continued state subsidies, meaning money paid out in 2012 and 2013 as part of a restructuring package would have to be recovered. The restructuring plan was ‘based on unrealistic assumptions’ the EU Commission said.

The government already owns 93 percent of Cyprus Airways, had bailed the airline out in 2007 and 2013, and had searched unsuccessfully for outside investors.

Vestager said: "Cyprus Airways has received large quantities of public money since 2007 but was unable to restructure and become viable without continued state support. Injecting additional public money would only have prolonged the struggle without achieving a turn-around.”

Once a suitor to acquire then troubled Greek carrier Olympic, Cyprus Airways has seen cheaper carriers muscle in on its more lucrative routes, particularly to Greece and the United Kingdom. It has been making losses for years.

Now it emerges the company has stored some of its planes in a remote Welsh airfield in an attempt to protect its assets. The embattled airline flew four of its A320s to the Ministry of Defence airfield at St Athan, Vale of Glamorgan and a fifth is expected to be flown there too.

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Jun 21, 2021

Elon Musk's Boring Co. planning wider tunnels for freight

2 min
Elon Musk’s tunnelling firm plans underground freight tunnels with shipping containers moved on “battery-powered freight carriers”, according to reports

Elon Musk’s drilling outfit The Boring Company could be shifting its focus towards subterranean freight and logistics solutions, according to reports. 

A Boring Co. pitch deck seen and shared by Bloomberg depicts plans to construct wider tunnels designed to accommodate shipping containers. 

Founded by Tesla CEO Musk in 2016, the company initially stated its mission was to offer safer, faster point-to-point transport for people, particularly in cities plagued by traffic congestion. It also planned longer tunnels to ferry passengers between popular destinations across the US. 

The Boring Co. completed its first commercial project earlier this year in April. The 1.7m tunnel system is designed to move professionals between convention centres in Las Vegas using Tesla EVs. It says the Las Vegas Convention Centre Loop can cut travel time between venues from 45 minutes to just two. 


Boring Co.'s new freight tunnels

The Boring Co.'s new tunnel designs would allow freight to be transported on purpose built platforms, labelled as “battery-powered freight carriers”. The document shows that, though the containers could technically fit within its current 12-foot tunnels, wider tunnels would be more efficient. Designs for a new tunnel, 21 feet in diameter, show that they can comfortably accommodate two containers side-by-side, with a one-foot gap between them.

The Boring Co.’s new drilling machine, dubbed Prufrock, can tunnel at a rate of one mile per week, which is six times faster than its previous machine, and is designed to ‘porpoise’ - mimicking the marine animal by ‘diving’ below ground and reemerging once the tunnel is complete. 

Tesla’s supply chain woes 

Tesla is facing its own supply chain and logistic issues. The EV manufacturer has raised the price of its vehicles, with CEO Musk confirming the incremental hike was a result of “major supply chain pressure”. Musk replied to a disgruntled Twitter user, confused as to why prices were rising while features were being removed from the cars, saying the “raw materials especially” were a big issue. 

Elon Musk Tweet

Car manufacturing continues to be one of the industries hit hardest by a global shortage in semiconductor chips. While China’s chip manufacturing levels hit an all-time high in May, and the US is proposing a 25% tax credit for chip manufacturers, demand still outstrips supply. Automakers including Volkswagen and Audi have again said they expect reduced vehicle output in the next quarter due to a lack of semiconductors, with more factory downtime likely

Top Image credit: The Boring Company / @boringcompany

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