It should be easier for Baltimore businesses to export goods to the Soviet Union under an agreement announced yesterday between USAir and the Soviet carrier, Aeroflot.
Under terms of the agreement, Soviet imports will arrive at John F. Kennedy Airport in New York, where they will be transferred to USAir jets for shipment to hundreds of locations in the United States or be put onto trucks for other destinations.
On the flip side, USAir will transport American goods to JFK Airport, where the cargo will be loaded aboard Aeroflot jets and flown to the Soviet Union.
USAir spokeswoman Susan Young said the U.S. exports will go to Moscow, St. Petersburg and Kiev.
More cities will be added later, she said, perhaps even Odessa, Baltimore's sister city on the Black Sea.
In May 1990, Gov. William Donald Schaefer led a trade mission to the Soviet Union to boost business between the two regions. Marilyn Corbett, a spokeswoman for the state Department of Economic and Employment Development, said the Aeroflot-USAir agreement will make it easier for Maryland businesses to follow through on leads and contacts made during last year's trade mission.
Ms. Young of USAir said "Baltimore will certainly play a role in the new program."
What is likely to happen, the spokeswoman explained, is that cargo would be trucked from JFK to Baltimore-Washington International Airport and other airports where it would be loaded on widebody jets for flights to other cities.
USAir has 2,600 daily flights, including 123 jet departures from BWI.
As an example of cost, Ms. Young said a Baltimore customer would pay $2.51 to ship a kilogram (2.2 pounds) of freight to any of the three Soviet cities which are covered by the agreement.
USAir declined to offer any information on the potential dollar value of revenue generated by the agreement or the amount of cargo that might be handled. Ms. Young said that was competitive information the carrier would not want to share.
She noted, however, that after the agreement was announced yesterday morning, that the carrier booked a 10,000-pound shipment from Orlando, Fla., to the Soviet Union.