Canadian Air Cargo, the freight division of Canadian Airlines International Ltd., plans a major increase in freight capacity between North America and Europe when the carrier begins serving nine European cities in the spring.

Ian Bootle, vice president for cargo, said here the airline's freight between Canada and the United Kingdom alone is expected to rise by almost 40 percent this year.Introduction of a new fleet of Boeing 767-300ER aircraft will enable the airline to achieve the growth targets. With 12 tons of cargo capacity each, the new planes almost double Canadian Airlines' trans-Atlantic cargo capacity. The carrier also will use McDonnell Douglas DC-10-30 aircraft with 15 tons freight capacity on some routes.

When Canadian Airlines introduces its summer schedule April 29, it will operate 20 scheduled flights weekly linking London Gatwick with Toronto, Ottawa, Calgary, Edmonton and Vancouver and three weekly flights between Manchester and Toronto.

Other European cities served will be Frankfurt and Munich in West Germany, Rome and Milan in Italy, Paris, Amsterdam and Copenhagen.

Canadian Airlines also has created a new position of regional manager for Europe. Paul Norris, formerly U.K. manager with Canadian Air Cargo, has been appointed to the post.

In the United Kingdom the airline expects its cargo growth to be aided by a 3.5 million ($5.6 million) redevelopment program. Skycare, its handling agent at London's Gatwick and Heathrow airports, is undertaking at its cargo facilities.

The airline will also operate a new fleet of trucks, each capable of carrying four pallets, to transfer cargo between the two airports. This could be particularly useful if Mr. Bootle's plan to establish interline arrangements with Far East and other airlines succeeds.

Developments in Canada are also expected to contribute to the airline's cargo growth strategy. Canadian Airlines is spending $1 million modernizing freight facilities at Toronto's Pearson International Airport and expanding its road trucking operations.