‘Pharma means han­dling pre­cious lives’

San­jiv Ed­ward, Head–Cargo, Delhi In­ter­na­tional Air­port (DIAL) and Ramesh Mami­dala, CEO, Celebi Delhi Cargo Ter­mi­nal Man­age­ment In­dia says Delhi can be a pharma hub. They talk about the fa­cil­i­ties at Delhi air­port and Celebi ter­mi­nal to make this pos­si­ble.

Cargo Talk - - Industry - Ramesh Mami­dala CEO Celebi Delhi Cargo Ter­mi­nal Man­age­ment In­dia

We re­ally need to move from the cul­ture where in­dus­try sees pharma as a piece of cargo. It is not just a piece, it could be life for 10 or 100 peo­ple With the avail­abil­ity of en­vi­ro­tainer con­tain­ers at air­ports, the cy­cle of leas­ing con­tain­ers cuts down from seven-eight days to three-four days We have a good in­fra­struc­ture, what is needed is right at­ti­tude. With more aware­ness and ef­forts by the in­dus­try, at­ti­tude will def­i­nitely change

Does Delhi have the right in­fra­struc­ture to be­come a pharma hub?

Ed­ward: Yes, we are the only air­port in the coun­try which has more than 50,000 sqft of space ded­i­cated for per­ish­ables han­dling in­clud­ing phar­ma­ceu­ti­cals. We have the in­fra­struc­ture to han­dle dif­fer­ent tem­per­a­ture zones and we have also in­vested in mak­ing sure that en­tire in­tegrity of the tem­per­a­ture is main­tained right up to the time when ship­ment is loaded on the air­craft. We are the first air­port in the coun­try to have cool dol­lies.

Mami­dala: From the Celebi point of view, in­fra­struc­ture wise, in the coun­try we have one of the best equipped air­ports. We are well pre­pared with fa­cil­i­ties and equip­ment in­clud­ing au­to­ma­tion. We have a piece of equip­ment, cool dolly, and are happy to in­vest more money in this. The other in­no­va­tion such as white cover, we are hap­pier to bring such in­no­va­tions in the air­port.

What chal­lenges are you fac­ing in this process?

Ed­ward: We re­ally need to move from the cul­ture where in­dus­try sees pharma as a piece of cargo. It is not just a piece, it could be life for 10 or 100 peo­ple. That mind­set needs to be changed. When you look at the pharma ship­ment, it means you are han­dling pre­cious lives.

Mami­dala: It’s high time to give the ship­ment the im­por­tance it de­serves. Com­pro­mise can have a dis­as­trous im­pact.

What steps have been taken to over­come the chal­lenges?

Ed­ward: We are an­chor­ing en­vi­ro­tainer that gives the sta­bil­ity to main­tain the tem­per­a­ture in­tegrity and de­liver it to the ship­pers. There are some move­ment where we could get into SEZs and trans­fer cargo into reefer. Ses­sions like road shows are ba­si­cally for aware­ness.

Air is the fastest mode of trans­port but has not been used as much as it could have been.

Ed­ward: The cus­tomer needs to have greater vis­i­bil­ity and trans­parency of the pipe­line that will in­crease con­fi­dence that ‘my cargo is be­ing taken well care of’ and the in­dus­try has a col­lec­tive re­spon­si­bil­ity for this. If ev­ery­thing is work­ing well, air freight is def­i­nitely cheaper when it comes to the to­tal cost of the com­pany.

Mami­dala: Over the last sev­eral years, air freight (in­clud­ing air­ports and truck­ing com­pa­nies) has lost the cred­i­bil­ity to the sea freight in­dus­try and sea freight has es­tab­lished more cred­i­bil­ity in man­ag­ing such ship­ments in a bet­ter way.

In Delhi, the model is in place, and en­tire sup­port sys­tem is also com­mit­ted. With the avail­abil­ity of en­vi­ro­tainer con­tain­ers at air­ports, the cy­cle of leas­ing con­tain­ers cuts down from seven-eight days to three-four days. Air freight is more at­trac­tive than sea freight with right equip­ment and right at­ti­tude.

What sup­port do you ex­pect from freight for­warders and CHA agents, car­ri­ers?

Ed­ward: My strong and sim­ple ap­peal to the ship­ping com­mu­nity is to de­mand qual­ity. Do not let price be the only de­cider. That’s how you will make sure your ship­ments are tak­ing care of the way they are sup­posed to be.

Mami­dala: Ab­sence of the right at­ti­tude and not look­ing at long term. That lack of think­ing is killing all of us.

Head –Cargo Delhi In­ter­na­tional Air­port (DIAL)

San­jiv Ed­ward

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