DHL launches China-Africa freighter operation

By Damian Brett

DHL Global Forwarding has launched a dedicated 100-tonne weekly airfreight service for organisations and governments shipping goods from China to Africa and Middle East.

The forwarder said it would consolidate cargo from across China into Guangzhou and airfreight them via Dubai to their various destinations across Africa and Middle East with transport times ranging from two or three days.

The bulk of the cargo is expected to comprise personal protective gear such as masks, gloves, hand sanitisers and goggles. Equally, part of the cargo will head to other countries in the Middle East to plug the demand gap there.

The service will operate for four weeks starting April 21, but the forwarder said it is actively seeking to secure routes to all of Africa and boost capacity to the Middle East and Africa in the longer term.  

Amadou Diallo, chief executive, DHL Global Forwarding Middle East and Africa, said: “DHL Global Forwarding is bolstering logistics support to our customers in the region who need to ensure stable supply chains, especially for medical and critical supplies during this critical period.

“With multiple flight cancellations that has strained worldwide airfreight capacity, we remain committed to leveraging our capabilities, global network and customized solutions to ensure that goods and critical resources continue to reach people and communities in Africa and the Middle East.”

Dubai plays a key role as a gateway between China and the rest of Africa and the Middle East.

DHL said that Africa is Dubai’s third largest trading partner in volume terms and Africa’s non-oil trade with Dubai has been growing steadily over the last decade, accounting for 10.5% of the emirate’s total non-oil foreign trade in 2018.

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