Aero Transporte SA - ATSA (4A, Lima International) has signed a firm agreement with De Havilland Aircraft of Canada for a DHC-8-Q400F-LCD and in the process becomes the first South American customer of De Havilland Canada’s Cargo Solutions Program and the first South America-based operator of the converted aircraft type.

In a statement issued on February 1, De Havilland Canada said it would undertake the conversion for ATSA in Canada utilizing its Transport Canada-approved original equipment manufacturer service bulletins. "(This) illustrates our growing capability to provide ongoing support to the global fleet of De Havilland Canada aircraft," the statement read.

ATSA operates five aircraft under its ATSA Airlines brand including a pair of passenger-configured DHC-8-400s - OB-2195 (msn 4051) and OB-2205 (msn 4053) - which service mining charters. There is also a single Fokker 50 - OB-2043-P (msn 20115) - which is parked at Lima International and two Beech 1900Ds - OB-1875-P (msn UE-68) and OB-1985 (msn UE-138). The B1900Ds are dedicated to scheduled passenger flights that operate between Lima and Chachapoyas, Lima and Huánuco, and Lima and Mazamari.

Commenting on the airline's charter work and reason for acquiring the converted freighter, ATSA president Carlos Cueva said, "we have first-hand knowledge of (the aircraft's) outstanding performance capability to support our expanding cargo operations in Peru’s mining sector."

De Havilland Canada unveiled its three DHC-8-400 cargo options at the 2022 Farnborough International Airshow. Distinct from the DHC-8-400QC and DHC-8-Q400(PF), the DHC-8-400F-LCD can be fitted with a large cargo door and a loading system capable of accommodating containerized cargo. ATSA's freighter will be equipped to handle LD1, LD2, LD3 and LD4 containers. Since Farnborough, Havilland Canada has signed firm orders for the DHC-8-400QC and DHC-8-400F-LCD types.