Jomo Kenyatta Airport Ranked Top at Cargo Handling 

A cargo shed at JKIA

The ranking was carried out at the beginning of this year by the Airports Council International (ACI). In their latest report, World Airport Traffic Report, TIACA highlights top airports for passengers, cargo and aircraft movements, showcasing the world’s fastest-growing airports

By The Weekly Vision

Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) in Nairobi is the 2nd fastest growing in the world at cargo handling, even as the International Air Cargo Association (TIACA) expressed concerns that Africa was generally lagging in this area.

 The ranking was carried out at the beginning of this year by the Airports Council International (ACI). In their latest report, World Airport Traffic Report, TIACA highlights top airports for passengers, cargo and aircraft movements, showcasing the world’s fastest-growing airports. In the report, JKIA was ranked 2nd as the ‘Fastest Growing Airport (Handing over 342,000 metric tons of cargo), after handling over 250,000 metric tons of air cargo in 2018, a 25% growth from the what was reported in the year 2017.

According to the Chief Executive Officer Kenya Airports Authority Alex Gitari, in the last few years, JKIA has seen the emergence of several modern transit sheds, increasing its annual overall cargo to 1.2million tons. Mr Gitari said Michaell Cotts, a leading cargo and logistics company, is currently constructing its new shed at JKIA, once complete, the new development is expected to inject an additional annual capacity of 150,000 metric tons at the airport

These developments have steadily continued since 2019 despite the devastating effects of Covid 19 stringent control and lockdown measures that grounded passenger and cargo air transport up to last year.  The report documents: “JKIA has recently witnessed a significant boost in air cargo traffic to and from Europe, Asia, America, and most recently China and Australia. This is what has culminated in JKIA being an emerging force and destination in the air cargo industry. Through deliberate planning and embracing public and private sector participation, the airport has registered a steady transformation in the way air cargo is managed.

According to the Chief Executive Officer Kenya Airports Authority Alex Gitari, in the last few years, JKIA has seen the emergence of several modern transit sheds, increasing its annual overall cargo to 1.2million tons. Mr Gitari said Michaell Cotts, a leading cargo and logistics company, is currently constructing its new shed at JKIA, once complete, the new development is expected to inject an additional annual capacity of 150,000 metric tons at the airport. Astral Aviation, a cargo airline operating from JKIA has in the last year acquired three Boeing 747-400 cargo aircraft to boost its freight capacity and expand its network.

The previous year TIACA board member and chairman of the African Airlines Association (AFRAA) Sanjeev Gadhia expressed concerns that only 15 per cent of the world’s air cargo was carried by African airlines

“This award validates our ongoing efforts in improving facilities at the JKIA Cargo area. I would like to congratulate all our stakeholders for their collective and ongoing efforts in making this possible. This is an exciting time for Kenya, the face of cargo is changing, and we are positioning JKIA as the premier cargo distribution centre for online commerce companies in the region.” he said. The previous year TIACA board member and chairman of the African Airlines Association (AFRAA) Sanjeev Gadhia expressed concerns that only 15 per cent of the world’s air cargo was carried by African airlines.

Mr Gadhia said the main challenges facing the carriers were lack of liberalization, restrictions on air traffic rights like in Rwanda, limited intra-Africa connectivity, lack of cooperation between African airlines, high costs and taxes on fuel and airport services, inadequate infrastructure crowned by lack of capacity building and training.

He said: “Despite these challenges, we are a force to reckon with as exhibited by JKIA’s ranking. It means that JKIA is going to be a premier airport in this part of the world not only for cargo but also passengers.” The AFRAA chairman said on the entire African continent there is no major competitor to JKIA apart from Ethiopia’s Bole International Airport in Addis Ababa, but JKIA is way ahead in the development of both cargo and passenger handling facilities including many aviation requirements.

He said that at the end of 2018 the International Air Transport Association (IATA) had reported that African Airlines as having had the fasted growth in year on year freight volumes in June 2017 up by 31.6 per cent year on year with the capacity to maintain that in the coming years. Mr Gadhia is also the founder and Chief Executive of Astral Airlines, a leading air cargo transporter based at the JKIA with tentacles to many parts of the world. The latest entrant to compete in the market from JKIA is Dubai based giant RSL Global Logistics which made its entry last year.

There’s no story that cannot be told. We cover the stories that others don’t want to be told, we bring you all the news you need. If you have tips, exposes or any story you need to be told bluntly and all queries write to us [email protected] also find us on twitter.

error: Content is protected !!
Open chat
1
Hello, how can we help you?