IN DECEMBER Emirates SkyCargo, the freight division of the Emirates airline, announced it had recently marked a milestone with its inaugural paperless flight. EK702, from Mauritius to Dubai, became the first flight on its global network to operate with a hold filled entirely with shipments which had been processed electronically.
Its Boeing 777-300ER, with a belly-hold capacity of 23 tonnes, transported a diverse load, including bank notes, flowers, fruits such litchis, clothing, textiles and courier items.
E-freight is a collective cargo industry initiative facilitated by IATA with the goal of removing all paper Air Waybills, as well as every other document and certificate, by the end of 2014.
“We firmly believe e-freight will become the industry standard and those who embrace the changes first will be best placed to reap those benefits,” said Ram Menen, Emirates’ Divisional Senior Vice President Cargo. “It is with great pride then that we are celebrating our first e-freight flight, which will act as a catalyst across our global network of 109 destinations.
“This marks a significant step towards working in a completely electronic environment, which will bring enhanced operational efficiency to the supply chain, streamlining processes, increasing speed and reducing costs. By reducing paper and the carriage of paper on aircraft, e-freight will improve reliability, increase accuracy and, of course, bring environmental benefits.”
Michael Harmon, Emirates’ Cargo Manager Mauritius and Seychelles said: “A tremendous level of cooperation and coordination was required to make this flight happen so great credit must go the numerous stakeholders, from freight forwarders to ground handlers, shippers and customs authorities.”