DHL Global Forwarding has launched a 100-tonne weekly air freight service for organisations and governments shipping goods from China to Africa and the Middle East. The group will consolidate cargo from across China into Guangzhou and air freight them via Dubai to their various destinations within two or three days.
"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 have strained worldwide air freight capacity, we remain committed to leveraging our capabilities, global network and customised solutions to ensure that goods and critical resources continue to reach people and communities in Africa and the Middle East," said Amadou Diallo, CEO, DHL Global Forwarding Middle East and Africa.
With its geographical location, Dubai plays a key role as a gateway between China and the rest of Africa and the Middle East.
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.
Named after the Nguni Bantu word, ubuntu
(humanity) used across Africa to refer to the universal bond of sharing, UbuntuConnect refers to the China-Africa lane where 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.
Whilst the secured uplift from China will be in operation for four weeks, DHL Global Forwarding is actively seeking to secure routes to all of Africa and boost capacity to the Middle East and Africa in the longer term.