DIAL Cargo kicks off Ini­tia­tives to make IGIA a trans­ship­ment hub

Cargo Talk - - International Airport - RATAN KR PAUL

In view of the fact that top per­form­ing in­ter­na­tional air­ports in the world are heav­ily de­pend­ing on trans­ship­ment cargo by act­ing as tran­sit point, Delhi In­ter­na­tional Air­port Lim­ited’s cargo di­vi­sion (DIAL Cargo) has re­cently in­tro­duced a more than 10,000 sq ft trans­ship­ment area at the IGI Air­port. They have also chalked out sev­eral prag­matic pro­grammes to make IGI Air­port a cargo hub in south Asia re­gion.

In an ex­clu­sive in­ter­view with Car­goTalk

Pradeep Pan­icker, chief com­mer­cial of­fi­cer, DIAL and San­jiv Ed­ward, Head DIAL Cargo un­veiled ma­jor ini­tia­tives that they have taken in the re­cent past (dur­ing 2012) to fur­ther strengthen the cargo traf­fic as well as cargo op­er­a­tion at this air­port. Though cur­rently the air­port han­dles –ap­prox 1800 tonne cargo a day, the ex­ist­ing cargo han­dling ca­pac­ity at this air­port is 1.5 mil­lion tonne a year. With en­hanced and huge ca­pac­ity (es­pe­cially af­ter com­ple­tion of the mod­erni­sa­tion of Brown­field cargo ter­mi­nal and launch of Green­field cargo ter­mi­nal), en­su­ing ul­tra­mod­ern fa­cil­i­ties like cargo vil­lage and ad­e­quate im­pe­tus on e-freight through its own Cargo Com­mu­nity Sys­tem, the air­port is on the verge of a great leap for­ward.

“Keep­ing this sce­nario in mind, we have al­ready taken a num­ber of in­no­va­tive mea­sures to ex­tend the hori­zon. In­tro­duc­ing trans­ship­ment area at the air­port, cre­at­ing off air­port fa­cil­i­ties like Air Freight Sta­tions, adding three more cargo stands for freighters and strength­en­ing the IT front are the ma­jor ini­tia­tives in this di­rec­tion,” said Pan­icker.

Ac­cord­ing to Ed­ward, the AFSs will not only re­duce the has­sles at the air­port, it would also gen­er­ate more cargo by bridg­ing the gap be­tween ac­tual ship­pers and car­ri­ers. It would en­cour­age man­u­fac­tur­ers and ex­porters at the hin­ter­lands. Ac­cord­ing to DIAL study, the AFS would also re­duce end-to-end (from AFS to air­craft) tran­sit time dras­ti­cally. “For in­stance, we have found that the end-toend tran­sit time from the re­cently launched Kan­pur AFS to an air­craft at Delhi Air­port was only 18 hours in­stead of pre­vi­ous 72 hours,” he in­formed. There are plans to in­tro­duce five more AFSs in 2013.

Com­ment­ing on the DIAL’s involvement as re­gard to build­ing those AFSs, pan­icker clar­i­fied that there was a MOU signed be­tween GMR (the prin­ci­pal con­sor­tium of IGI Air­port) and CONCOR. DIAL will ex­tend all kind of sup­ports to make the ven­ture a success.

Ac­cord­ing to Ed­ward, the AFSs will play a ma­jor role in due course of time in terms of re­duc­ing cost for ship­pers. Brush­ing aside the per­cep­tion that AFS will add costs for ship­pers, Ed­ward main­tained that it would rather re­duce the pro­cess­ing and trans­porta­tion costs. “There will be value ad­di­tion to each ship­ment in terms of pro­cess­ing and trans­porta­tion by ex­pe­ri­enced and state-of-the-art ser­vices,” he added. In ad­di­tion, there is sep­a­rate lane for this spe­cial (cus­toms bonded and well pro­cessed) ship­ments.

Pan­icker also un­der­lined the im­por­tance of the pro­posed Cargo Vil­lage for a smooth cargo han­dling at the air­port. The project will be op­er­a­tional by 2015. “Our ini­tia­tives on AFS and cargo vil­lage will tremen­dously help the ter­mi­nal op­er­a­tors at this air­port by bring­ing in more cargo and stream­lin­ing the traf­fic flow in the near fu­ture,” he em­pha­sised. He also made it clear that air­port ter­mi­nals are not built for cargo stor­age. Also, no ter­mi­nal op­er­a­tors are de­pend­ing on de­mur­rages, which are al­ready show­ing a de­cline (about 30 per cent) yearon-year. In ad­di­tion, as a cus­to­dian of the two ter­mi­nals DIAL is also work­ing with them re­gard­ing global best prac­tices. “We are closely mon­i­tor­ing the ter­mi­nal op­er­a­tors and eval­u­at­ing their ser­vices time to time, so that ship­pers are ben­e­fited through world class ser­vices,” stated Ed­ward.

“DIAL is very sin­cere about the devel­op­ment of cargo in­fra­struc­ture at this air­port. We have al­ready de­cided to in­vest more than Rs 1200 crore for cre­at­ing cargo in­fra­struc­ture and there would be no dearth of fur­ther in­vest­ment as and when re­quired,” added Pan­icker. Mean­while, about Rs 700 crore has been in­vested for the Brown­field and Green­field cargo ter­mi­nals and more than Rs 500 crore has been kept for the cargo vil­lage project.

(L-R): Pradeep Pan­icker and San­jiv Ed­ward at DIAL of­fice in New Delhi

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