Digitization of the Air Cargo Industry is Slowly Taking Off
Europe’s leading air cargo hub actively promotes the digitization of airfreight processes itself. Together with DAKOSY, Fraport has developed the new shipping portal INFr8 for all parties involved in the air cargo chain, enabling the first digital dangerous goods declaration (eDGD). Simplifying and streamlining processes is also the aim of Berlin-based start-up cargo.one, with its air cargo booking platform of the same name: a web-based spot market service covering all airlines. According to Oliver Neumann, one of the founders of cargo.one, more than 70 forwarders are already using the platform for bookings. The whole booking process, including instant confirmation, only takes two minutes.
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“America First” Jeopardizes Global Supply Chains
The keynote speech by Folker Hellmeyer, Chief Analyst at SOLVECON INVEST, was on the topic of collaboration and competition at a global level. Under the title “Changes and risks for worldwide business – Competition of cultures”, the finance expert talked about geopolitical risks like the “America first” policy, which threatens global supply chains, and China’s New Silk Road Initiative, which Europe cannot afford to ignore any longer. The international community must itself try harder to take advantage of the new trade corridors.
Innovative propulsion systems that do not emit any greenhouse gases can contribute to achieving the aim of reducing CO2 emissions in aviation. Aircraft manufacturer Airbus was awarded this year’s IDL Award (Innovation Award of German Aviation) prize for its innovative, hydrogen-powered fuel cell demonstrator H2T (Hydrogen to Torque). Barnaby Law, Program Director Hydrogen and Fuel Cell at Airbus, presented the functionality of the system that received the award in the “Emission Reduction” category. In future, it could replace the auxiliary power unit at the tail of the aircraft, which has so far been powered with kerosene.
To combat climate change, the IATA has set a series of ambitious targets to reduce CO2 emissions. Growth in aviation is to be climate-neutral from 2020, and CO2 emissions should be reduced by 50 percent by 2050. This is a considerable challenge for the air cargo industry, said Professor Alan McKinnon from Kühne Logistics University, as it will only be possible to replace kerosene with biofuels by 2040 at the earliest. The exponential growth in air cargo, driven in part since 2010 by the e-commerce boom and increasing transnational trade, is set to continue.
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Text by Benjamin Klare
Photos: Andreas Henn