Weekly News Roundup 21-29 August

A brief roundup of the news and events that took place last week… all in 2½ minutes…



This week’s stories kicked off with Panalpina once again warning of another peak season crunch. The global freight forwarder and logistics giant was spot on in its warnings last year, but this year it has an additional warning that airports in Asia-Pacific, “could be in for a surprise”. Panalpina’s global head of air freight, Lucas Kuehner is warning that as trade tensions between the US and China continue, cargo could be re-routed from China through Southeast Asian countries for relabelling and repacking before being flown to their final destination. Clearly an interesting development, but one that could severely overstretch limited airport capacity in the region.

Singapore Airlines has taken an interesting step to establish a strategic partnership with the Alibaba Group. While much the partnership focuses on commercial passenger activities such as marketing, ticket sales etc, cargo is also a feature of the agreement, via Alibaba’s logistics arm, Cainiao Network. Although specifics were few, SIA said it was joining “Cainao’s broader efforts in building a global smart logistics network that delivers across China within 24 hours and globally within 72 hours.”

Kuehne + Nagel was also busy in China, announcing a joint venture with Chinese automotive logistics group Sincero. The logistics company has nation-wide operation coverage focusing on contract logistics for the automotive sector and Kuehne + Nagel will hold majority share of the joint venture.

Meanwhile, Tianjin Airlines has begun a service from Chongqing to London Heathrow – the airport’s only connection to the central Chinese city – operating A330-200 passenger aircraft three times a week. This will provide up to 3,744 tonnes of annual belly capacity through the key UK gateway. Tianjin Air Cargo was also recently granted approval to begin freighter services using its fleet of fleet of three B737Fs that it took delivery of in March 2018.

Over in Hong Kong, freight forwarding and logistics company, U-Freight has expanded its presence in the global aviation and aerospace supply chain management market through work with SOAR LP, a global Aircraft on Ground (AOG) specialist.

The Association of Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA) has reported some good news with Asia Pacific airlines continuing to see firm cargo demand despite the ongoing transpacific rhetoric and moderating demand in global service and manufacturing sectors, with a 5.0 per cent growth in July, year-on-year.

On the ‘green’ front, DHL eCommerce has rolled out a fleet of electric vehicles in Malaysia and Vietnam as part of its domestic delivery network and in line with the Group’s commitment to Zero Emissions by 2050. As part of the Deutsche Post DHL Group’s commitment to reduce all logistics-related emissions to nett zero by the year 2050, DPDHL announced that it will operate 70 per cent of its own first and last mile services with clean pick-up and delivery solutions.

Air Niugini Cargo Limited (ANCL), a subsidiary of Air Niugini Limited has appointed ACP Worldwide, a global airline management company as the exclusive cargo General Sales Agent (GSA) for Air Niugini Cargo throughout Australia. The Papua New Guinea carrier also announced it was undertaking a new initiative to allow pick up and delivery of all Lae City destined cargo in Lae instead of Nadzab airport along with partner Express Freight Management (EFM).

Further west, Nepal Airlines has signed a five-year agreement for the supply and management of ULDs with Unilode Aviation Solutions, a global provider of outsourced Unit Load Device (ULD) management and repair solutions. The agreement comes on the heels of the carrier taking delivery of two A330-200s which are being added to the airline’s passenger fleet to serve its growing international network.

Middle East

Aramex’s Saudi division has teamed up with Al-Dawaa Medical Services Co. (DMSCO), the owner of Al-Dawaa Pharmacies in the Kingdom to launch e-commerce service centres in its retail outlets. The agreement will look to expand the logistics provider’s presence in the Saudi market, provide a new and unique service to the e-commerce sector, and extend additional services to Al-Dawaa Pharmacies’ clientele.


AeroLogic, the joint venture cargo airline of Lufthansa Cargo and DHL Express, is set to receive a brand-new B777 freighter in January, leased to it by Lufthansa Cargo. The addition of the new freighter to the all B777F fleet will bring it up to 11 aircraft.

LUG aircargo handling has recently received the International Air Transport Association’s CEIV Pharma certification for its modernised Health Care Centre at Frankfurt Airport’s CargoCity South. LUG modernised the facility in 2017 and expanded the temperature-controlled area to 625 sqm.

DHL Express has announced its 300th Transported Asset Protection (TAPA) security certification with the latest facility to attain certification being the Birmingham Service Centre of DHL Express in the UK.

The BMW Group is teaming up with Lufthansa Cargo to present the BMW Vision iNEXT World Flight that will see a specially outfitted Lufthansa B777F travel to Munich, New York, San Francisco and Beijing between 9-14 September. The mobile display will showcase the vision of future mobility embodied by the BMW Vision iNEXT, the latest Vision Vehicle from the BMW Group.


As part of its ongoing e-AWB push, Delta Cargo has launched self-service iPad kiosks in Atlanta and Boston, and testing in other hubs, requiring electronic air waybills (e-AWB) as standard operating procedure. Delta’s current eAWB penetration rate is 81.3 per cent year-to-date, which is above IATA’s global goal of 68 per cent e-AWB for 2018.

UPS has launched Ware2Go in the US market, which is in itself both a new technology company and digital platform. The platform plays matchmaker, connecting available warehouse space and fulfilment services with merchants who need to get online orders to customers fast. The new business augments the company’s suite of custom e-commerce solutions designed to support small and medium-sized companies.

In response to the rapid growth of the drone and Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS) market worldwide, Airports Council International (ACI) World has launched a policy paper on drones providing informed and practical recommendations for airports.

LATAM Cargo will begin a new WHO Good Distribution Practice (GDP) compliant pharma cargo route between Brussels (BRU) and Montevideo (MVD), from September 2018. The new route is aimed at tapping demand from global pharmaceutical companies seeking to optimise entry to South America via Uruguay given its benefits in terms of quality, security and the reduction of overall lead times.

Panalpina Bogotá has been certified according to WHO Good Distribution Practice (GDP), a key international standard for the proper distribution of medicinal products for human use. The business unit in Bogotá, Columbia is Panalpina’s 31st location globally to obtain such an important certification for the healthcare industry.

Meanwhile in Montevideo, phase two of MVD Free Airport’s Cold Chain Warehousing Master Plan is underway, a result of increasing demand from global pharmaceutical shippers attracted to Uruguay and Montevideo’s MVD Free Airport in particular, as a gateway for South American distribution.

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