YTO Cargo Airlines (YG, Hangzhou) has bought its first B767-300(ER) for conversion into a freighter and expects to complete the acquisition of the second unit of the type by the end of the month, Cargo Facts has reported.

In a transaction managed by Aircraft Asset Management, the Chinese cargo specialist acquired C-GHPE (msn 33423), an 18.2-year-old jet, previously operated by Air Canada/Air Canada rouge, which has been stored at Marana since early April 2020. Owned by JP Lease Products & Services and managed by Arena Aviation Capital, it is expected to depart for conversion with Israel Aerospace Industries this month.

The second B767-300(ERBDSF) due to join YTO Cargo Airlines will be sistership C-GHPN (msn 33424).

Both aircraft are scheduled for redelivery to YTO Cargo Airlines after conversion in the third quarter of 2021. They will join the carrier's existing fleet of four B737-300(F)s and five B757-200(PCF)s. Its subsidiary North-Western Cargo International Airlines operates a further single B737-300(F). YTO Cargo Airlines has an order for ten B737-800(BCF)s with options for a further ten, although the conversions have been frozen due to a lack of available feedstock.

The airline flies exclusively on behalf of its parent, Chinese logistics firm YTO Express, which is 22.5%-owned by the country's e-commerce behemoth Alibaba. Besides the ongoing fleet expansion, it is also investing in a new hub at Jiaxing airport, which will eventually replace Hangzhou as the carrier's main processing centre. Jiaxing is currently a military facility under conversion to a dual-use airport, located roughly halfway between Shanghai and Hangzhou.

According to the ch-aviation fleets advanced module, currently, the sole operator of B767 Family aircraft in China is SF Airlines (O3, Shenzhen) with nine B767-300(ERBCF)s. None of the Chinese airlines operates passenger-configured B767s.