Release Date:
Release ID: 335

Issa Baluch, Chairman and CEO of Swift Freight International and Immediate Past President of FIATA, received the Lifetime Achievement Award from Air Cargo News on April 22, 2006.

“We look for someone that not only has shown initiative in the air cargo business over a sustained period of time but has also dedicated energy to the industry at large,” said Ray Crane, Chief Executive of Air Cargo News. “Issa Baluch amply fits that bill, having given his time and energy to FIATA and TIACA, as well as writing a book on air cargo. We have been proud to nominate this award over the past few years and there is not a more fitting candidate than Issa."

Press Release

The award was presented at Air Cargo News’ annual Cargo Airline of the Year Awards in London.

“I am honored to be awarded with a Lifetime Achievement Award,” said Mr. Baluch. “This is a great privilege and honor which I accept on behalf of myself and the many in my organization and family who have sacrificed so much to make it possible for me to perform at peak and be recognized here tonight. I therefore take this opportunity to thank Air Cargo News and all supporters.”

Previous winners of the Lifetime Achievement Award were Geoff Bridges of Bridges Worldwide and Sigfried Koehler of Lufthansa Cargo.

Mr. Baluch is credited with having pioneered the thriving multimodal sea/air combined transport freight business that operates in the United Arab Emirates. He started his career as a tally clerk at Gulf Agency Company in Dubai, UAE in 1973. In the following seven years he rose to the positions of Shipping Supervisor and Deputy Manager in the Freight Division. In 1980 he was made General Manager of the Freight Forwarding arm and continued to serve in that position until 1989, when he founded Swift Freight International. Today, Swift is among the top freight logistics providers in the UAE, with a network of more than 30 offices in 17 countries throughout Africa, the Middle East, and Asia.

Mr. Baluch holds a Master’s degree in Business from the University of Hull (UK) and has also completed numerous aviation, transport, and freight forwarding programs. He is the author of Transport Logistics: Past, Present and Predictions (

Mr. Baluch was President of the National Association of Freight and Logistics (UAE) from 1993 to 2000, and President of the Sea-Air Operator’s Association (UAE) from 1992 to 1994. He served as President of FIATA (International Federation of Freight Forwarders’ Associations) from 2003 to 2005, and will remain a member of the Presidency until 2007. He also serves on the Board of Directors of The International Air Cargo Association (TIACA), the Advisory Board of Dubai Logistics City, and the Marketing Committee for the Dubai Flower Centre.


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