November 7, 2019 / 11:49 AM / a month ago

Alibaba, Russian Post launch China-Russia flights to cut delivery times

FILE PHOTO: The logo of Alibaba Group is seen at the company's headquarters in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province, China July 20, 2018. REUTERS/Aly Song/File Photo

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Alibaba Group’s (BABA.N) logistics operator and Russia’s Pochta postal service have launched their first direct China-Russia cargo flights to deliver AliExpress goods purchased online by Russians, AliExpress Russia said on Thursday.

The move, which AliExpress Russia hopes will help it cut the time it takes to deliver orders from China to Russia to 10 days, comes with Russia’s rapidly growing e-commerce market producing an annual turnover of more than $14 billion.

Alibaba’s Cainiao logistics operator is renting 7 cargo planes from Pochta Russia and Aviastar-Tu to fly to the cities of Moscow, Yekaterinburg and Krasnoyarsk on a daily basis.

In October, Russian internet company Mail.Ru (MAILRq.L) said it had agreed a joint venture with Alipay, the mobile payments arm of Alibaba Group, along with the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) and two other Russian partners.

Reporting by Anton Zverev, Nadezhda Tsydenova; writing by Tom Balmforth; editing by Jason Neely

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