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Release ID: 5747

AIR CARGO INDIA 2016 addresses key issues in the industry

The three-day event of AIR CARGO INDIA 2016, the 6th edition of the International Biennial Air Cargo event being organised by STAT Trade Times got to a good start with Dr Renuka Parmar, Senior Advisor to the Ministry of Civil Aviation, Government of India lighting the lamp and officially inaugurating the event. Prominent leaders of the air freight industry from across the globewere present on the occasion. The event attracted more delegates and visitors than its previous edition in 2014. There were 434 delegates and 3450 trade visitors. 70 leading companies exhibited their products and services at the three-day event held in Grand Hyatt in Mumbai from February 23 to 25.

Dr Parmar also delivered the keynote address marking the starting of the three day conference. Earlier, Mr R K Patra, Group Editor-in-Chief of STAT Media Group, to which STAT Trade Times belongs, took Dr Parmar round the expo centre to view the exhibition. In his welcome speech, Mr.Patra pointed out the fact that the event was taking place in the backdrop of the MAKE IN INDIA initiative of the Government of India aimed at boosting the manufacturing activities and thereby promoting the export industry. The main theme of the event was MAKE IN INDIA-AIR CARGO MAKES IT HAPPEN. Dr.Parmar sounded optimistic that in spite of the decline in exports witnessed in the preceding year, the trade would pick up sooner than later. She also dwelt on the importance of air freight industry to the success of the MAKE IN INDIA initiative.

The session that followed soon after witnessed an objective and no holds barred discussion on how the air freight industry will play an integral role in making the MAKE IN INDIA initiative a success. Glyn Hughes, Global Head of Cargo, IATA moderated the session. He kicked off the discussion addressing the question to the panellists if the air freight industry in India is ready to provide the right links to the global market. Nurturing skilled labour, creating an environment conducive to business by relaxing regulations, adopting technology for ease of doing business were some of the main issues discussed.

In the afternoon on the inaugural day Brussels Airport hosted the PHARMA AIR SHIPPERS FORUM which saw huge turnout from India’s pharmaceutical manufacturing sector. This was the second PHARMA AIR SHIPPERS’ Forum taking place under the auspices of the event, and the response was overwhelming to say the least. The objective was to give a platform for the shippers of pharma products to meet with other links in the supply chain and address the challenges faced by them.

The second days’ discussion concentrated on the potentials and pitfalls in India’s ambition to be global force in the air freight industry. Hemanth D.P. Chief Operating Officer, Aero Commercial, Cargo and Asia Pacific Flying school, GMR Airports moderated the session. There was this opinion that freight forwarders would have to brace themselves up in the light of the flourishing e-Commerce. IT and logistics companies will play a yeoman role in changing the face of the industry in the coming years was the thread of discussion in the session.

This industry will completely change in the coming years, forwarders by their own admission will hit a brick wall soon in their ability to compete against the likes of Amazon, Alibaba, Google and the other large IT and logistics companies that will market their services beyond their own needs.

An exclusive Air Shippers Forum hosted by Frankfurt Airport with the support of Federation of Indian Exports Organisation (FIEO) took place in the afternoon of the second day. Such was the response to the forum the organizers had to work extra hard to manage the entry of delegates and make special arrangements to accommodate everyone. The theme was ‘Forum for facilitating the Indian exporters and importers.

The highlight of the whole event was the Gala Award Nite when STAT Times honoured those who had achieved excellence in the industry. There were about 18 different categories in which excellence was honoured. While Frankfurt Airport bagged the winner’s trophy in the category, ‘INTERNATIONAL CARGO AIRPORT OF THE YEAR ‘ Emirates SkyCargo won the INTERNATIONAL CARGO AIRLINE OF THE YEAR AWARD. Etihad Cargo won the top prize in ‘AIR CARGO BRAND OF THE YEAR’ category. The highlight of the evening was the Lifetime Achievement Award that went to Chris Chapman, one of the founders of Chapman Freeborn Air Chartering Company, the world leaders in air chartering. It was a fitting tribute to the vision and entrepreneurship of the man, who rose from scratch to become the founder of the leading charter providing company in the world.

E-Commerce is the most talked about business in the world today. It has brought about a sea change in the purchasing habits of millions of people around the world. This was the theme (eCommerce – delivering the future) of the discussion in the first session of the last day of AIR CARGO INDIA on February 25.

The last panel discussion of the three-day event was on “Indo-Africa Trade Link – value waiting to be unlocked”. Africa is a virgin land of opportunities and the industry has been witnessing traders vying with each other to cash in on the opportunities in the continent. India is one of the countries having a thriving business relation with the continent and the panellists on the session reiterated the fact that Africa’s potential are still untapped and air cargo industry has huge opportunities there.

The three-day event was brought to a perfect close at Asilo, the plush, open air lounge on the rooftop of St Regis in South Mumbai. The evening function was more of an unwinding exercise to the participants. The event provided a lot of food for thought to the players in the industry on how the industry can be turned around.
STAT Times International Award of Excellence in Air Cargo
COMPLETE LIST OF AWARDS

Air Shipper of the Year – Pharma (Region – India)
Serum Institute of India
Air Shipper of the Year (Region – India)
Siemens
Cargo Airline of the Year (Region – India)
Highly Acclaimed – Jet Airways Cargo
Winner – Indigo Cargo
Emerging Cargo Airport of the Year (Region – India)
Highly Acclaimed – GMR Rajiv Gandhi International Airport, Hyderabad
Winner – GVK Kempe Gowda International Airport, Bengaluru
Cargo Airport of the Year (Region – India)
Highly Acclaimed - GMR Indira Gandhi International Airport, Delhi
Winner – GVK Mumbai International Airport, Mumbai
Freight Forwarder of the Year (Region – India)
Highly Acclaimed – Penta Freight
Winner – Jeena & Co
Ground Handler of the Year (Region – India)
Highly Acclaimed – Hyderabad Air Menzies Air Cargo
Winner – Celebi Delhi Cargo Terminal Management India
General Sales Agent of the Year – Domestic (Region – India)
Winner – Sovika Aviation Services
General Sales Agent of the Year – International (Region – India)
Winner – Global Aviation Services
International Freight Forwarder of the Year
Highly Acclaimed – D B Schenker
Winner – DHL Global Forwarding
International IT Systems Provider of the Year
Highly Acclaimed – Champ Cargo Systems
Winner – IBS Software Services
International Cargo Airport of the Year
Highly Acclaimed – Brussels Airport
Winner – Frankfurt Airport
International Charter Provider of the Year
Highly Acclaimed – Air Charter Service
Winner – Chapman Freeborn
International Cargo Ground Handler of the Year
Highly Acclaimed – dnata
Winner – Worldwide Flight Services
General Sales Agent of the Year – Worldwide
Highly Acclaimed – Air Logistics Group
Winner – ECS Group
Fastest Growing International Cargo Airline of the Year
Highly Acclaimed – Turkish Cargo
Winner – Saudia Cargo
International Cargo Airline of the Year
Highly Acclaimed – Qatar Airways Cargo
Winner – Emirates SkyCargo
Air Cargo Brand of the Year
Etihad Cargo
Lifetime Achievement Award
Chris Chapman, co-founder, Chapman Freeborn

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