April 5, 2011 – It took great effort but the Emirates SkyCargo has finally managed to process an entire shipment electronically.
The freight division of Emirates airline’s achievement is a milestone made possible by the teams in Nairobi and Amsterdam, the Netherlands.
EK9952, which left Nairobi for Amsterdam on March 27, became the first flight out of Nairobi with shipments processed electronically. The Boeing 747 freighter carried 103,884 tonnes of cut flowers to Amsterdam, the main market for Kenyan flowers.
Speaking in Nairobi, Emirates Airline Cargo Manager for East Africa, Khalid Al Hinai, emphasized the significance of this achievement and Emirates’ leadership role in spearheading the e-freight agenda both regionally and globally.
“This is the first time a full freighter had been attempted and achieving this marks a significant step towards working in a completely electronic environment, which will bring enhanced operational efficiency to the supply chain.”
“It took great efforts from the teams in Nairobi and Amsterdam to make this flight happen so credit goes to all stakeholders – from freight forwarders to ground handlers, shippers and customs authorities,” he continued.
E-freight is a collective cargo industry initiative facilitated by IATA, with the goal of removing all paper air waybills, as well as every other document and certificate, by the end of 2014.
IATA has estimated that about US$4.9 billion of industry savings could be generated and about 7,800 tonnes of paper documents eliminated annually using the e-freight corridor.
“We totally support this initiative and firmly believe e-freight will become the industry standard and those who embrace the changes first will be best placed to reap those benefits which also include improved reliability, increased accuracy and, of course, bring environmental benefits,” said Ram Menen, Emirates Divisional Senior Vice President Cargo.
The Nairobi e-freight freighter flight to Amsterdam follows a successful paperless flight from Mauritius in late 2010.