Monday, January 16, 2017

Freight, Logistics and Heavy Lift News Round Up to Start the Week

Snippets of Industry News to Peruse After the Weekend
Shipping News Feature
WORLDWIDE – As we all get back into the groove after the holiday period we’ve waded through the freight and logistics industry news so you don’t have to, to give you a basic summary of some sector events and new supply chain contracts that occurred in the business last week including another huge heavy lift air movement.

DUBAI – KAZAKHSTAN – Global trade enabler DP World has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Government of Kazakhstan for the development of a special economic zone in Aktau further boosting trade and logistics in the country.

The MoU was signed by DP World Group Chairman and CEO, Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem and Governor of Mangistau, Akim Alik Aidarbayev in the presence of First Deputy Prime Minister, Askar Mamin. It builds on DP World’s present management advisory services contract with the Port of Aktau, Kazakhstan’s main cargo and bulk terminal on the Caspian Sea. DP World also provides similar services under a separate contract with Kazakhstan Temir Zholy (KTZ), Kazakhstan’s national railway company for the development of the Khorgos Special Economic Zone and Inland Container Depot.

Both parties will be exploring opportunities to work together on the Aktau SEZ development project while adding shipping capacity on the Caspian Sea. The projects are part of Kazakhstan President Nazarbayev’s five-year economic policy, ‘Nurly Zhol’, a $9 billion project focused on the development of transport and logistics, energy and industrial infrastructure, as well as of small and medium-sized businesses. DP World Group Chairman and CEO, Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, said:

“Kazakhstan is an important location along the New Silk Way – a trade corridor that will benefit economies of the world. New and efficient infrastructure is needed to realise seamless cargo movement with multi-modal transport links essential for profitable growth. To attract investors there is a need to find innovative ways of working together with a focus on infrastructure provision, developing financial markets, mitigating risks and eliminating red tape.”

“The development of Special Economic Zone in Aktau will stimulate economic growth of the country, and more importantly, it will make Kazakhstan the largest transport and logistics hub in Central Asia. We are delighted to have the opportunity to continue sharing our ports and logistics expertise with the government to develop the country’s modern logistics hubs as engines for economic development and to enable trade across the region.”

US – XPO Logistics has been awarded a supply chain contract by engine manufacturer Cummins to support its customers worldwide. XPO Logistics will operate Cummins’ primary parts distribution centre starting this month, managing approximately 800 workers and over 2,700 orders shipped daily.

The one million square foot facility in Memphis distributes component parts, rebuild kits and remanufactured engines as the principal restock hub for Cummins’ warehouses worldwide, and supports thousands of Cummins dealers in North America. XPO will provide custom-designed technology for parts stocking and control, fulfillment, shipping and returns management. Troy Cooper, XPO Logistics chief operating officer, said:

“We’re proud to support Cummins in its commitment to superior customer service and supply chain excellence. We look forward to adding significant value to the Memphis distribution center with cutting-edge technology and global best practices for enhanced productivity, quality and cost-effectiveness.”

RUSSIA – SWITZERLAND – KOREA – Operating on behalf of Air Charter Service France for Heppner Transport & Logistics, one of Volga-Dnepr’s An-124-100 freighters has transported an oversize cargo of pump and vaporizer skids to Seoul for the Korean oil industry. The shipment, which included two pieces both weighing 19,500 kilos and two weighing 14,800kg each, was loaded using the An-124-100’s on board crane system and flown from Switzerland’s EuroAirport Basle-Mulhouse Freiburg to Seoul’s Incheon International Airport.

The shipper prepared special wooden frames to fit underneath the 15-tonne pieces to help with the loading process, which took three hours to complete and can be seen it the attached photograph. Alexandre Busila, Cargo Director of Air Charter Service France, said:

“The loading of this cargo needed meticulous preparation with the Volga-Dnepr Team. Thanks to our joint work the flight was a real success.”

ITALY – Carcano Antonio S.p.A., a global company in the field of aluminium foil rolling and converting, has awarded a six-year contract to Kuehne + Nagel to manage its in-house logistics. K+N will be responsible for the set-up and storage of coils coming from the manufacturing sites, picking and shipment to the customers, including domestic and international transport.

30 workers previously employed at Carcano’s warehouses, are transferred to the in-house logistics operations carried out by Kuehne + Nagel in order to ensure a seamless transition of processes. In addition, Kuehne + Nagel supports the design of the layout and set-up of Carcano’s new logistics centre in Andalo which is currently being built. Ruggero Poli, Managing Director of Kuehne + Nagel Italy said:

“We are very pleased that Carcano chose Kuehne + Nagel to manage their logistics activities. This new contract is a result of our proven expertise in production logistics and motivates us to continue innovating and developing solutions that effectively support our customers in their day-today business challenges.”

THAILAND – A project to upgrade and expand GAC Thoresen Logistics’ food-grade distribution facility at the Amata Nakorn Industrial Estate in Thailand’s Chonburi Province has been completed, boosting its capacity to 20,000 square metres and pallet positions to 32,000, more than double the number before the expansion. Alwyn Mendonca, GAC Thailand’s Managing Director, says the expansion has been planned to meet increasing demand, commenting:

“Thailand is one of the world’s top producers of food products and a major exporter of agricultural and marine products, so there is a constant demand for safe and clean warehousing solutions, including both ambient and temperature-controlled storage and transportation. Our upgraded facility will enable us to better support the increasing and varied needs of our customers, who include food, pharmaceutical and FMCG importers, manufacturers, distributors and exporters in Thailand’s eastern seaboard and beyond.”

Located 42 kilometres from the Suvarnabhumi International Airport and 46 kilometres from Laem Chabang Deep Sea Port, the facility boasts dry and ambient storage capability with marshalling and value-added service areas, as well as high hygiene storage areas including four temperature-controlled chambers ranging from 17 to 25 degrees Celsius, a combination of drive-in and selective pallet racking, 11 hydraulic loading bays, specialised cooling systems and 24-hour monitored security and fire protection.

UK – POLAND – P&O Ferries has announced that the company will send a total of four ships from its North Sea and Short Sea fleets to the Remontowa shipyard in Gdansk this season for major upgrades and re-fit work. The ferry and logistics company states it has awarded contracts worth £14 million in total with the yard and other subcontractors to refit the vessels.

The 32,000-ton sister ships the Pride of York and the Pride of Bruges, which operate on the Hull-Zeebrugge route, will sail to Remontowa this week and next month respectively for major work on their physical infrastructure and passenger areas which will guarantee their future into the 2020's. The Pride of Canterbury and Pride of Burgundy, 180 metre long vessels which can sail up to 10 times a day across the English Channel, will also travel to the Baltic during this quarter for major life extension work.

P&O Ferries services on both routes will run as normal for the duration of the re-fit season as replacement ships have been brought in as cover. John Garner, Fleet Director at P&O Ferries, said:

"We looked at a number of shipyards across Europe for this vitally important work - which will guarantee the future of all four ships into the next decade - and settled on Remontowa for its track record of delivering first class re-fits and the economies of scale generated by taking the ships to the one yard."

AUSTRALIA – DHL eCommerce, a division of Deutsche Post DHL Group, has announced the launch of its Fulfillment Center in Sydney, Australia to support booming demand for overseas goods amongst Australia's online shoppers. International brands and retailers are now able to reach out to the rapidly growing Australia market. The Centre is intended to provide overseas merchants with fast, flexible shipping that integrates inbound freight, inventory, and last mile delivery in a single consolidated service. Damien Sheehan, Managing Director Australia, DHL eCommerce said:

"Australian shoppers are the second-most likely in the world to buy online from overseas merchants, and the significance of their purchasing power will only increase as cross-border e-commerce grows at an average of 29% per year until 2020. Online retailers need to overcome the traditional problems associated with overseas expansion - finding new suppliers in each market, delivering shipments within days not weeks, and keeping costs in check - if they want to stay competitive in this borderless future."

HONG KONG – The 2017 Hactl International Forklift and Pallet Building Competition has been won by Japan Airlines, which achieved top place in both the Forklift Driving and Pallet Building competitions. Overall second place went to Nippon Cargo Airlines, which came second in both parts of the competition.

Teams from Air China Cargo, Air France, KLM and Martinair Cargo, China Southern Cargo, Hactl, IAG Cargo, Japan Airlines, Malaysia Airlines, Nippon Cargo Airlines and Saudi Airlines Cargo took part in the event. The Forklift Driving competition requires teams of four to manouevre forklift trucks over a challenging route; for the first time, this year’s competition involved lifting cargo in sequence within a small and complex course.

While the Hactl competition is designed to recognise efficiency in handling, its main focus is aviation and workplace safety. Separate panels of specialist professional judges adjudicate the forklift driving and pallet building elements, adding weight to the aims and results of the contest. Hactl Chief Executive Mark Whitehead said:

“We were very pleased to organise and host this event once again, bringing teams together from around the world to pit their skills against safety and efficiency criteria. We congratulate everyone who took part, both on their obvious abilities and their enthusiasm.”