Emirates SkyCargo, the freight division of Emirates airline, has announced that electronic air waybills (e-AWBs) are now being used for 100% of shipments from its Dubai, UAE hub.
The use of e-AWBs are part of an IATA initiative to remove the requirement of paper air waybills (AWBs), the contracts used for the transportation of air cargo. By eliminating the need to print, handle or archive paper AWBs, the air freight process is simplified and more beneficial to businesses throughout the supply chain. The scheme is part of the IATA’s e-freight push, which aims to remove all paper documents and certificates from the industry by 2014.
Emirates SkyCargo was already on track to meet IATA’s deadline. Fifty-one of the locations it serves are now e-freight compliant, and the milestone reached in Dubai further shows the progress being made by the carrier.
Emirates’ Senior VP Cargo Revenue Optimisation & Systems Pradeep Kumar commented: “The transition to e-freight is a massive challenge for both the industry and Emirates SkyCargo. Change of this scale requires time and many steps have been made, but this really is a giant stride forward.”
The e-AWB can be used in cases where the country of origin and the country of destination have ratified the same treaty, the Montreal Convention/Protocol. Information is more accurate with better confidentiality, while the increased efficiency of the supply chain improves reliability, speed and cost-effectiveness. Delays caused by the loss of documents are also avoided and the industry’s impact on the environment is reduced.
Other notable highlights for Emirates include the first paperless flight (between Mauritius and Dubai) in December, and the inaugural paperless freighter (between Nairobi and Amsterdam) in April 2011.