Faced with the challenge of moving billions of Covid-19 vaccine doses, GMR Hyderabad International Airport Limited, GMR Hyderabad Air Cargo, and Dubai Airports have come together in a first of its kind initiative to build an exclusive Vaccine Air Freight Corridor called ‘HYDXB-VAXCOR’ (Hyderabad to Dubai global Vaccine Corridor).
Since Hyderabad and its nearby regions are hub of several vaccine manufacturers, it is expected that majority of indigenously manufactured vaccines will be exported from Hyderabad airport to various parts of the globe.
GMR, in a statement Monday, informed that an MoU regarding the Hyderabad-Dubai vaccine air freight corridor was signed by Pradeep Panicker, CEO-GMR Hyderabad International Airport, Saurabh Kumar, CEO-GMR Hyderabad Air Cargo, and Eugene Barry, EVP-Commercial, Dubai Airports Corporation in a virtual ceremony last week.
As per the MOU, GMR-Hyderabad and Dubai Airports will be according priority to the temperature-sensitive vaccine shipments moving between Hyderabad and Dubai to facilitate further connections to various continents.
This agreement will lead to the rollout of customised and simplified processes and infrastructural support to
streamline the journey of Covid-19 vaccine right from the manufacturing unit to the airport and hub logistics to delivery to end-customers, the release said.
The partnership also entails technology collaboration, under which the entities will explore and work together on an integrated IT solution that will provide end-to-end visibility, including shipment temperature and status tracking for the customers while cargo is in transit between Hyderabad and Dubai and during its onwards journey to various global destinations.
“In the current global context, there is a need for meticulous planning & collaborations to ensure safe and efficient air transportation of Covid-19 vaccines. Accordingly, we have partnered with Dubai Airports to jointly offer “HYDXB-VAXCOR” for the global distribution of COVID-19 Vaccines. We are also significantly upgrading our handling capacities for Covid-19 vaccine shipments requiring cold to ultra-cold temperature ranges and becoming India’s largest Air Cargo center both for export/imports and domestic distribution of the vaccine,” said Pradeep Panicker, CEO of GMR Hyderabad International Airport Limited.
The CEO of Dubai Airports, Paul Griffiths, said a major surge in demand for the efficient, safe, and reliable global distribution of high volumes of Covid-19 vaccines is expected in the coming months. “Our partnership with GMR-Hyderabad is timed perfectly just as the global race to develop the vaccines enters the final stage. This corridor is the result of our proactive strategy to be ready with innovative, collaborative, and agile shipping solutions for the industry,” he said.
GMR-HYD is expanding its facilities and streamlining processes to meet the unique requirements of handling Covid-19 Vaccine. It has already launched a large, custom-built Cool Dolly, a mobile refrigerated unit for airside transportation till the aircraft, maintaining the cold-chain, which is scalable, the statement added.
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