Etihad Cargo is preparing to launch a new state-of-the-art pharmaceutical cool chain facility at the Cargo Village in Abu Dhabi Airport (AUH).
The airline partnered with Etihad Airport Services and Abu Dhabi Airports to build the facility, which is expected to enhance the handling and storage capacity at AUH.
According to Etihad, the additional 3,000-sqm facility will feature the latest technology and features, including bulk loading docks with levelers, high-speed roll-up shutters, insulation and a real-time temperature monitoring system. The new facility will also feature new X-ray screening for customs inspections within a fully temperature-controlled environment and new dedicated thermal covers.
Over the last 12 months, Etihad Cargo transported over 50,000 tonnes of cool chain products, including pharmaceutical and healthcare products and fresh produce.
Etihad said the launch of the expanded, dedicated pharmaceutical hub will double Abu Dhabi Airport’s cool chain storage capacity and enhance the airport’s capabilities for the storage, handling and transportation of cool chain products. No planned date was set for the actual launch.
Martin Drew, Senior Vice President Global Sales & Cargo at Etihad Aviation Group said: “This joint venture located at Etihad Cargo’s hub at Abu Dhabi International Airport provides the perfect location to link the Middle East to not only Asia and Europe, but also the US and Africa, so life-saving medicines and the latest treatments can be transported seamlessly around the world to those that need them the most. Investment into the carrier’s infrastructure and Abu Dhabi hub will enable Etihad Cargo to meet the future challenges of the pharma supply chain and will play a significant role in co-creating a robust and future-proof healthcare ecosystem here in the UAE and around the world.”
Etihad Cargo said it will be further investing in sustainable solutions to make the transportation of pharmaceuticals more environmentally friendly, in line with its plans and pledge to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.
The carrier had already replaced 3,000 containers from its original aluminum unit load device (ULD) fleet with a more environmentally friendly, lightweight version.
More recently, it entered into a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with B Medical Systems to develop and launch the world’s first airline-specific passive temperature-controlled container.
The airline said it will be participating in Pharma. Aero’s green pharma lane project in the coming months, expanding on the successful launch of Pharma Corridor 2.0.