September 27, 2021: Emirates SkyCargo reported that it has transported 400 million kilogrammes of pharmaceuticals in five years.
Five years ago, in September 2016, Emirates SkyCargo raised the bar in the air cargo industry for the safe and efficient transport of pharmaceuticals by launching its dedicated GDP certified pharma handling facility at Dubai International Airport and at the same time unveiling its three-tiered specialised product - Emirates Pharma.
Nabil Sultan, Emirates divisional senior vice president, cargo, said, "At Emirates SkyCargo, we recognised very early on that our customers were looking for increasingly specialised solutions for their cargo and this was true especially for valuable and life-saving medicines that have to be transported under very strict conditions. After extensive planning and significant investment to our infrastructure, processes and people, we introduced our 360 degree transportation solution backed by state of the art GDP certified Dubai handling facility for our pharma customers in September 2016.”
He further added, “The response from the market was overwhelmingly positive and we managed to very quickly transform the perception that Dubai was a destination to be avoided for pharma cargo in the summer to that of Dubai being a reliable hub for pharma customers all year round. Our pharma volumes have continued to grow over the years and to date, we have transported more than 400 million kilogrammes (400,000 tonnes) of pharma cargo under our Emirates Pharma umbrella."
Emirates SkyCargo has over 20,000 square metres of GDP compliant storage and handling space at its hub in Dubai processing close to 200,000 kilogrammes (200 tonnes) of pharmaceuticals every single day comprising vaccines, biologics, medicines for illnesses such as cancer, diabetes and a range of other medical treatments.
Over the years, the carrier has been able to connect increasing volumes of pharma cargo between markets spread across six continents including India, Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, UK, Russia, United States, Brazil, Australia, Korea, Japan, UAE, Saudi Arabia and Egypt. Nearly one-third of the total pharma cargo exported on Emirates SkyCargo every year originates from India.
During the pandemic, by deploying an increasing number of cargo only flights on passenger aircraft, Emirates SkyCargo offered continued connectivity for the transport of urgently required pharmaceuticals.
Recently, the carrier expanded its cool room infrastructure with 94 airline pallet positions at its EU GDP certified dedicated pharma facility at Dubai International Airport. The extended cool room provides additional capacity in a temperature-controlled environment (2-25 degrees Celsius), allowing for the equivalent of between additional 60-90 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines to be stored at any one point of time.
Between October 2020 and September 2021, Emirates SkyCargo has transported more than 250 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines to more than 75 destinations through its hub in Dubai.