A Slovakian air cargo company has started carrying Norwegian seafood to China in the first direct freighter flight between Norway and the Asian country, Norway’s state-owned operator of civil airports Avinor said on Friday.

Air Cargo Global started on Thursday its new direct route between Oslo Airport in Norway and Tianjin Binhai International Airport in China, Avinor said in a press release.

This is the first direct freighter flight between Norway and China, Lasse A. Vangstein, communications advisor of Avinor, told Xinhua. Air Cargo Global, a worldwide airfreight company based in Bratislava, Slovakia, will operate the route between Norway’s main airport and Tianjin, a coastal metropolis in northern China, twice weekly on Thursday and Saturday. “We aim to step up to three weekly departures from March, if the market responds well to the increased capacity,” Peter Scholten, chief commercial officer of Air Cargo Global, was quoted as saying in the press release.

“We have reached an agreement with Fish Forever, a major Chinese trading company that specialises in fish. They contacted us wanting to look into the possibility of importing fresh Norwegian seafood directly to China, because demand for high quality fresh fish is on the increase in the Chinese market,” Scholten said.

Avinor said it wants to enable the growing Norwegian seafood industry to reach its markets in a fast and efficient manner. “It is very pleasing that Air Cargo Global is now able to offer direct freight capacity to China, a market that has an ever-increasing demand for supply of fresh Norwegian seafood,” said Martin Langaas, director of cargo at Avinor.

“With this route we contribute to Norwegian exporters getting their products quickly and efficiently onto the market, so that the seafood is served as fresh as possible,” he said.