IATA and CCA sign MoU to drive Temp-Controlled Supply Chain improvements
The Cool Chain Association (CCA) and the International Air Transport Association (IATA) announced on 22OCT02, that they have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the aim of improving the quality, efficiency and sustainability along the supply chain when it comes to transporting perishables and pharmaceuticals. The two organizations will be working closely together to develop common work programs and focus groups to tackle related issues such as vaccines transport, for example. They will also interact by attending each other’s industry meetings as observers or to present best practices and specific project results. (The CCA, for example, is currently working on the LAX Initiative: a series of data-sharing tests monitoring perishable shipments on global trade lanes, with the aim of improving supply chain management and reducing food loss.) The collaboration measure was already put into action on 21OCT when the CCA participated in IATA’s webinar on the industry’s readiness for the transportation of vaccines and life science products lead by Andrea Gruber, IATA Head of Special Cargo.
Commenting on the MoU, the CCA Secretary General and Airline Partner Manager, SkyCell AG, Nicola Caristo said: “Both CCA and IATA have a common interest in ensuring the secure handling and transport of perishables and pharmaceuticals by means of robust standards. We will be working together to promote the implementation of methodologies and quality criteria such as the Center of Excellence for Independent Validators (CEIV) Fresh and Pharma programs.”
Glyn Hughes, IATA’s Global Head of Cargo, added: “Air cargo has been critical throughout this crisis in supporting medical staff on the front line fighting COVID-19 whilst ensuring that global supply chains are maintained for the most time-sensitive products including medical and food supplies. With these experiences it is evident that collaboration and alignment with industry initiatives are key elements that will transform the future of our industry.”
Emirates going large-scale in COVID-19 vaccine preparation
Emirates SkyCargo announced on 22OCT20 that it plans “to set up the world’s largest GDP compliant air cargo hub in Dubai for global distribution of COVID-19 vaccine” by re-opening its Emirates SkyCentral DWC in Dubai South and establishing this as “the world’s first dedicated airside cargo hub for COVID-19 vaccine distribution.”
More than 4,000 m² temperature-controlled warehouse space which can hold an estimated 10 million vials of vaccine, keeping them at a 2-8°C if required, will be available for COVID-19 logistics, along with “one of the world’s largest fleet of Cool Dollies” for cool transport between the aircraft and cargo terminal, and temperature-controlled trucking docks.
Dedicated zones for value-added services such as re-icing and repackaging of vaccines for global distribution, are also planned. It has also established a dedicated rapid response team to coordinate international COVID-19 vaccine transportation requests and can incorporate over 4 years of dedicated EmiratesPharma experience in dealing with pharmaceutical cargo. It has been ramping up its network and covers the main pharmaceutical destinations again.
HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Emirates Chairman and Chief Executive said: “Dubai is well positioned to serve as a gateway and distribution hub for COVID-19 vaccines to the rest of the world. We have the infrastructure and logistics connections, and a geographic location that puts markets representing more than two-thirds of the world’s population within an 8-hour flying radius. Over the years, through our continuous investment in capabilities and processes for the transport of temperature sensitive pharmaceuticals, Emirates SkyCargo has managed to position Dubai amongst major global pharmaceutical customers as the year-round preferred point of transit for their valuable cargo. Setting up a dedicated airside hub for COVID-19 vaccines is a keystone project harnessing our network, reach and competencies to positively impact the lives of people around the world.”
CEBU hands ULD fleet management to Jettainer
Cebu Pacific (CEB), which operates one of the world’s most modern fleets averaging 5 years, and which is the Philippines’ leading carrier and its first passenger airline with own freighters (2 ATR72-500 by the end of 2020), has chosen to hand over the management of its 2,700 ULDs to Jettainer with the start of this month. A move that was decided as part of CEB’s strategy since the start of the pandemic, to rapidly improve the efficiency of its operations – including digitalization and process optimization, as it grows its international business to Asia, Australia, and the Middle East. Two values that are mirrored in Jettainer’s expertise: with the purchase of CEB’s ULD fleet, Jettainer will use its inhouse IT to evaluate Big Data to optimize processes and ULD requirements at each location, increasing efficiencies for the airline.
Michael Ivan Shau, Chief Operations Officer at Cebu Pacific, explained: "As we continue working towards being a world-class airline, we are always on the lookout for growth opportunities. Extensive discussions around the possibility of outsourcing our ULD asset management have been conducted, and Jettainer’s total package, incorporating innovation, transparency, and absolute reliability, convinced us to entrust our business to them. We believe this move will allow us to reallocate resources and capital, which can be prioritized to support our path towards recovery. Contracting Jettainer also contributes to our ongoing right-sizing exercise as their advanced technology and assets provide us with much-needed flexibility to carry out our growth strategy.”
"We are very pleased to welcome the Philippines’ leading carrier to our customer base. We thank Cebu Pacific for giving us the opportunity to demonstrate the superior value of our ULD management service, along with the seamless onboarding process which can be implemented conveniently even during these
unusually challenging times. To show full support to our new partner the Jettainer way, and to pursue our growth strategy in Asia, setting up a dedicated team in Manila is in the pipeline," Thomas Sonntag, Managing Director of Jettainer, concluded.
Amazon Air officially launches first European hub in Leipzig
What CFG anticipated back in APR20 ( https://www.cargoforwarder.eu/2020/04/19/take-off-in-times-of-shutdown-amazon-air-goes-leipzig/ officially went live this week. Posting on LinkedIn, Joshua Landry, PMP – Principal TPM Amazon Air Science / Technology, announced: “We've successfully launched the first Amazon Air hub in Europe at the Leipzig EDDP/LEJ) Airport! I am humbled and very proud to share that after eight months of design, construction, integration, and testing we have launched the Amazon Air EU hub at the Leipzig/Halle International Airport located in Schkeuditz, Germany. A big THANK YOU to all the 50+ technical and operations teams that supported me with the successful deployment and launch of this facility.”
With its own ground handling and a 20,000 m² cargo warehouse near to the World Cargo Center, Amazon Air is now primed to carry out its own operations and efficiently process an ever-growing eCommerce segment with its own expanding fleet which is expected to reach 80 aircraft soon. Its website still shows open positions in Leipzig, amongst the 200 that it expects to have filled by the end of this year.
If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is…
Crises situations bring out the best and the worst in people. No doubt, you will have heard stories of people posing as health authorities or police, calling you out on having apparently ignored lock-down and demanding you pay a fine, or forcing a down-payment for a COVID-19 test, or you will have read about various fake PPE providers out there. With the devastating slump in cargo capacity, the huge increase in rates on certain routes, the search is on for freighter charters – often by those who have, until now, relied on scheduled airlines for their business, and who have little to no experience in arranging their own charters. Hence the scammers have discovered a new niche: offering 747 freighter charters at attractive rates, and posing as recognized companies, or looking like a bona-fide professional set-up. Once a deposit is paid, the damage is done: no plane, no more contact.
Be vigilant: check for business email addresses, scrutinize contacts and websites, check plane serial numbers to see where the plane is currently located (in other words – is not parked in the desert or written off as scrap, already), request full details regarding contract and insurance. Best of all: leave it to the experts who know what they are doing: Always use an established charter broker or cargo airline.
First ever TIACA Air Cargo Sustainability Survey
In line with its close focus on Sustainability within air cargo and building on the premiere of its Air Cargo Sustainability Awards from NOV19, TIACA last week launched its first Air Cargo Sustainability survey. Participants have until 01DEC20 to anonymously answer a series of questions aimed at getting a good overview of where the entire industry currently stands, so that TIACA has a baseline on which to jointly develop strategies and monitor progress. “What is not measured cannot be managed!” says Celine Hourcade. “Shippers and consignees, forwarders, airlines, airports, ground handlers, manufacturers, IT solution providers; regardless of your size and geographic location” involved in their company’s sustainability strategy and initiatives, are all invited to provide input which will be consolidated and “communicated at the Digital Air Cargo Forum in December 2020.” The survey takes around 20 minutes and TIACA asks participants to share the link on social media channels and networks to get as much input as possible: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/ZHCQ22V
Nippon Express doubling rail connections in 2021
Given to growing move from air to rail cargo due to capacity restraints and inflated air cargo rates (currently at ten times the price of rail cargo), Nippon Express has announced the decision to massively up its China-Europe connections from 2021. This is to meet increasing demand from automobile suppliers and precision equipment makes. Whereas Nippon Express currently runs around 2,500 to 3,000 round-trip routes per year, around 5,000 are planned for 2021, and the company is looking to expand its rail cargo share from 10% by adding more routes and destinations such as a connection between Xi’an to Scandinavia, passing through Russia and the Ukraine. It trunk routes at the moment are Xi'an-Duisburg, Shanghai-Hamburg and Qingdao-Budapest – all of which take around 25 days compared to the usual 5-day air cargo connections, but are currently more reliable connections than in a still volatile and strapped aviation industry.
It is not alone in its strategy: A.P. Moller - Maersk, started a monthly sea-rail combination service in JUL19, which recently became a weekly service from SEP20. Cargo is shipped from ports in South Korea, Japan or China via sea to the Russian port of Nakhodka, where it is then loaded onto trains to northern Europe on the Trans-Siberian Railway, and vice-versa. Cargo-partner also recently arranged a 46-container block train from Linz, Austria, to Qingdao, China along the “Iron Silk Road” for Lenzing AG which was previously shipping by sea. Rail connections are on the increase.
AirBridge Cargo continues to prove vaccine transport readiness
This time, AirBridgeCargo Airlines (ABC)’s special cargo was part of an ongoing assignment from what will eventually total 840 tons between AUG20 and DEC20 and consisted of equipment for the production of coated cyclo olefin (COP) polymer vaccines containers. These were being flown from Frankfurt, Germany to Atlanta, USA on behalf of Streck Transport GmbH and ZAHORANSKY AG.
All Volga-Dnepr carriers are ramping up for the coming COVID-19 vaccines transport project and have been temperature mapping all the freighters in their fleet when shipping regular vaccines. They are also collaborating with vaccine manufacturers, freight forwarders, ground handling agents, airports, container leasing providers and other stakeholders, to understand requirements which they then pass on in internal trainings to their employees.
Yulia Celetaria, Global Pharma Director, AirBridgeCargo Airlines stated: “We have already witnessed an emerging demand for COVID-19 vaccine-related shipments, covering vials, ampules, injectors, as well as production equipment. It is amazing to realize that the equipment we transport today will facilitate the production of more secure plastic vials made of COP which we might be delivering later with COVID-19 vaccines inside, once the Phase 3 trials are finalized. With 30 years of experience in the air cargo industry and in-depth knowledge of healthcare logistics, many customers call on our high-quality services, capable fleet, extensive network and certified personnel to guarantee safe and reliable transportations, especially when it comes to special cargo.”
dnata partners with UNEX to expand into Indonesia
dnata announced its strategic partnership with PT UNEX Rajawali Indonesia last week, and thus its addition of Indonesia in its global set-up. UNEX is a leading ground handling and cargo warehousing company based in Soekarno-Hatta International Airport (CGK), Jakarta, which is where the collaboration will launch, eventually growing to further Indonesian airports in the next few years. The two companies will improve on existing ground handling capacities through joint investments in facilities, equipment, and training, and dnata is allocating dedicated, senior operational and management staff to develop the partnership.
Dirk Goovaerts, dnata’s Regional CEO for Asia Pacific, said: “We are thrilled to partner with UNEX to strengthen Soekarno-Hatta International Airport’s position as a regional hub. dnata is globally known for our commitment to delivering the promises our customers make. We will work hard to ensure the highest standards of service and safety in Jakarta and, as we expand our operations, other airports in Indonesia. We look forward to a long-standing, successful partnership with UNEX which we expect to bring significant benefits for airline customers.”
Budiman Tedja, President Director of UNEX, added: “We are excited to enter into a strategic partnership with dnata that has a strong brand reputation and execution track record as a leading air services provider. We believe dnata’s global experience and network, combined with our local expertise, will reinforce Indonesia’s position as regional aviation hub, promote industry best practices, and provide world class services to all stakeholders including airlines, passengers, logistic providers, and Indonesian consumers.”
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