in General Aviation

Air cargo bottlenecks could put lives at risk

Posted 25 March 2020 · Add Comment

International Air Transport Association (IATA) and its members renewed their call to governments to take urgent measures to ensure that vital air cargo supply lines remain open, efficient and effective.

 

“Air cargo is a vital partner in the global fight against COVID-19. But we are still seeing examples of cargo flights filled with life-saving medical supplies and equipment grounded due to cumbersome and bureaucratic processes to secure slots and operating permits. These delays are endangering lives. All governments need to step up to keep global supply chains open,” said Alexandre de Juniac, IATA’s Director General and CEO.

 

The COVID-19 crisis has seen almost the entire world-wide passenger aircraft fleet grounded; a fleet which normally transports almost half of total air cargo shipments. Airlines are scrambling to meet the gap between cargo demand and available lift by all means possible, including re-introducing freighter services and using passenger aircraft for cargo operations. To support these efforts, governments need to remove key obstacles by:

 

·       Introducing fast track procedures for overflight and landing permits for cargo operations, particularly in key manufacturing hubs in Asia -- China, Korea and Japan -- in response to the increased number of cargo charters replacing withdrawn passenger operations. 

 

·       Exempting flight crew members who do not interact with the public from 14-day quarantine requirements to ensure cargo supply chains are maintained

 

·       Supporting temporary traffic rights for cargo operations where restrictions may apply

 

·       Removing economic impediments, such as overflight charges, parking fees, and slot restrictions to support air cargo operations during these unprecedented times

 

·       Removing operating hour curfews for cargo flights to facilitate the most flexible global air cargo network operations

 

 

The World Health Organization (WHO) reiterated the importance of air cargo in the fight to slow the spread of COVID-19:

 

 

“Around the world the frontline health workers who fight against COVID- 19 need to be continuously supplied with necessary medical equipment and protective material. It is our collective duty to keep these supply lines open by continuing air cargo operations. The scale-down of air passenger flow is seriously hurting our scheduled freight operations. We call on airline companies and governments to join the global effort to ensure dedicated freight capacity continues to operate on previously high volume passenger routes that are now closed down,” says Paul Molinaro, Chief, Operations Support and Logistics, WHO.

 

“Air cargo is on the front line, not only fighting COVID-19 but ensuing that global supply chains are maintained for the most time-sensitive materials including food and other products purchased online in support of quarantine and social distancing policies implemented by states. But we can only continue to do this if we work together with the support of governments. Keeping supply lines open also supports jobs in local economies for example producers of perishables in Africa and Latin America. We are stronger together,” said Glyn Hughes, IATA Global Head of Air Cargo.

 

Keeping Air Cargo Moving

 

Airlines are taking extraordinary measures to ensure the flow of vital goods by air. Some examples include:

 

 

·       Delta, American and United have started cargo-only flights, using passenger aircraft domestically and internationally to bolster depressed global airfreight capacity

 

·       Air Canada, Austrian, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Emirates, Iberia, Korean, LATAM Lufthansa, Qantas, Scoot, Swiss and many other carriers have made some passenger aircraft in their fleets available for chartered cargo operations

 

·       Ethiopian Airlines is playing a key role in transporting COVID-19 medical equipment through its hub to Africa’s 54 nations, including recently transporting equipment donated by the Jack Ma Foundation

 

·       Croatian Airlines has operated a charter flight from Abu Dhabi to Zagreb delivering critical medical equipment

 

·       China Eastern delivered a significant amount of medical supplies to support doctors in Italy

 

·       Austrian used 2 passenger B777 aircraft to fly medical equipment from China to Austria

 

·       Airlink, a nonprofit organization working with aviation and logistics partners to transport relief workers and emergency supplies have transported 16,127 lbs, of medical supplies and food aid to help the COVID-19 relief effort

 

·       FedEx Express has helped the US government transport COVID-19 test specimens from more than 50 remote drive-thru testing centers at major retailers across 12 states.

 

·       The UPS Foundation has expanded its relief response to Coronavirus, delivering urgent medical supplies, food and housing, and financial assistance to aid in recovery efforts

 

·       Airbus has transported 2 million face masks from China to Europe on a test A330-800 aircraft — the majority will be donated to Spain & France

Other Stories
Advertisement
Latest News

IATA warns governments on high cost of testing

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) called on governments to take action to address the high cost of COVID-19 tests in many jurisdictions and urged flexibility in permitting the use of cost-effective antigen tests as an

Gulfstream exceeds 500 in-flight connectivity service installations

Gulfstream Aerospace has surpassed 500 installations of the Inmarsat Jet ConneX in-flight connectivity platform on large- cabin aircraft. The Wi-Fi solution is available on new aircraft and can be retrofitted on qualifying existing

Embraer delivered 34 jets in Q2 of 2021

Embraer delivered a total of 34 jets in the second quarter of 2021, of which 14 were commercial aircraft and 20 were executive jets (12 light and eight large).

ICAO SG highlights African aviation's growth potential

Addressing Africa’s aviation leaders last week, most notably through her opening of the 2021 AFI Aviation Week, ICAO Secretary General Dr Fang Liu highlighted the tremendous potential future for aviation in Africa that could be

Single-engine Denali aircraft joins Beechcraft turboprop family

Textron Aviation is realigning its turboprop aircraft lineup as the single-engine Beechcraft Denali (previously branded the Cessna Denali) to join the legendary twin-engine Beechcraft King Air 260 and King Air 360/360ER as part of

Rostec starts developing hydrogen-powered aircraft engines

United Engine Corporation of Rostec has started a programme to develop hydrogen-powered engines for both aviation and ground applications.

WDS SK2601090322
See us at
Aviation MENA 2022WDS BT1202090322Aviation Africa 2021 BTOCDAS21_BT