With the International Air Transport Association (Iata) warning the industry to prepare now to vaccinate the world, Emirates SkyCargo is stepping up its readiness for what will be the biggest logistics challenge ever.
The airline has announced plans to create the world’s largest dedicated airside cargo hub for the vaccine in Dubai. It says it will be re-opening its Emirates SkyCentral DWC cargo terminal in Dubai South to serve as a dedicated anchor hub for cold chain storage and distribution of the vaccine.
Watch a video about Emirates SkyCargo setting up the world's largest GDP compliant airside hub for COVID-19 vaccine distribution.
The airline’s freight division has also set up a dedicated rapid response team to coordinate requests from the various partners involved in the international vaccine distribution ecosystem and to streamline the carrier’s response to vaccine transportation requests.
HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Emirates chairman and chief executive, says it will be the largest dedicated airside facility in the world for Covid-19 vaccines and will allow the air cargo carrier to fly in vaccines from manufacturing sites globally, and store and prepare shipments for regional and global distribution.
Emirates SkyCentral DWC has over 4 000 square metres of temperature-controlled GDP-certified dedicated pharma storage area, allowing for large-scale storage and distribution of the potential vaccines. Overall it is estimated that the facility can hold around 10 million vials of vaccine at a 2-8 degrees Celsius temperature range at any one point in time.