The integrator announced investing an amount in the multiple million euro range in its central European gateway Liege. According to head of communication at TNT Express, Cyrille Gibot the money will predominantly be spent for modernizing and enlarging the sorting system.
The project will be kicked off later this year and is scheduled to be concluded in 2016, if consultations with the integrator’s works council have been successfully completed. Once operational,
the hub’s sorting capacity will be increased by 50 percent and improve the safety and working conditions of TNT’s 1,500 workforce at Liege.
According to TNT, the modernization of the 75,000 sq. meter comprising facilities will increase the speed and processing capacity of the facility. It includes the installation of an automated handling system for smaller parcels and documents, as well as the centralization of cargo screening activities in one of the sorting halls. In addition, TNT Express announces to invest in additional X-ray machines to scan the growing number of shipments arriving by road. The exact expenditure will be made public during the second half of this year, speaker Gibot stated.
For customers the benefits are manifold claims the package delivery company. “The investment will mean shorter handling times for export goods and urgent deliveries, as well as better handling of fragile items.” The expected operational advantages for TNT Express include the elimination of bottlenecks, the possibility to accommodate an increase in volumes and a reduced cost per unit.
TNT Airways operates a fleet of 50 freighters, among them five aircraft for serving intercontinental routes (2 Boeing 747-400Fs, 3 Triple Seven freighters). About 125 trucks converge to Liege every night. The Belgian arport has been TNT Express’ main air hub in Europe since 1998, after moving over from Cologne to Liege. It is closely connected to the company’s European Road Network, which is headquartered in the Dutch town of Duiven.
TNT Express connects hundreds of destinations in Europe by road and 65 by air, complementing its European Road Network by air services when required by distance and urgency.
When asked about negations between TNT Airways and Qatar Cargo to align their biz speaker Gibot confirmed ongoing talks. He went on to add: “We always explore new business opportunities and Qatar Airways is one of the carriers we are speaking with.” However, “it’s our policy not to comment on any ongoing talks.”