A Range of News Items from Around the World of Shipping, Transport and Logistics

UK – Two leading logistics groups have announced commencement of operations at new Leicestershire based distribution hubs in the past week. Firstly DSV has opened the doors to its new 522,000 square foot industrial warehouse, cross-dock and office facilities at Mercia Park. The facility consists of a 358,000 square foot steel-framed warehouse containing three mezzanine floors with two single-storey hub offices totalling 4,360 square feet, a 112,000 square foot cross-dock terminal plus a 35,660 square foot three-storey office building, 381,700 square feet of yard space and car parking for over 400 vehicles.

UK – Meanwhile parcel group DPD is set to open its fifth distribution hub in the UK at Hinckley, Leicestershire. The 500 metre long building will have 3,000 metres of conveyor which the company says can sort 72,000 packages per hour whilst being the most eco-friendly which it owns, fitted out as it is with a Solar PV system with over 6,000 panels, providing an output of 2.4 MW. UK – GB Railfreight (GBRf), in partnership with Hitachi Rail, has delivered a brand-new fleet of Class 803 high-speed electric trains that entered service last month to Lumo, veering away from its traditional cargo only role.

Since May, GBRf has provided Hitachi Rail with train planning, haulage, and crews for the testing of these new trains which aim to bring rapid, low-cost, electric travel to the East Coast Main Line, from London to Edinburgh. GBRf will shortly deliver the fifth and final train for the Lumo passenger fleet to Hitachi Rail’s Edinburgh depot in Craigentinny. Moving forward, the long-term partnership between GBRf and Hitachi Rail will focus on commissioning new trains for East Midlands Railway and the West Coast Partnership, in addition to transit and testing operations in support of existing fleets across the country.

UK – Connecticut headquartered GXO Logistics has signed an agreement with homeware retailer Dunelm Group Plc to provide increased capacity for its home delivery fulfilment operations in Stoke on Trent. GXO will outfit Dunelm’s new facility in Stoke with innovative technology, including Cognex machine vision systems and ProGlove wireless wearable barcode scanners, and train Dunelm colleagues to use GXO’s advanced systems to pick items from inventory that have been ordered online, pack them efficiently, and hand them off to carriers for delivery. UAE – MICCO Logistics, a subsidiary of AD Ports Group, has acquired 31 tipper trucks as part of their effort to offer broader integrated logistics support to the UAE’s construction and metals manufacturing sectors.

The trucks will join MICCO’s existing ground fleet of 400 plus vehicles that currently service a number of different industry sectors, including the Pharmaceutical, Healthcare, Fresh and General Cargo. The new tipper fleet has a combined transport capacity of over 2,300 tonnes and is capable of moving material and supplies between ports, factories, and different development sites across Abu Dhabi and the rest of the UAE. The latest acquisition aims to further diversify the range of services offered by AD Ports Group.

The fleet will be fully equipped with pre-installed Fleet Management Systems (FMS) incorporating and integrating the latest real-time vehicle geo-fencing and telematics technology. FRANCE – IRELAND – One side effect of Brexit has been an uptick in trailer and container freight between the two countries and this has prompted Brittany Ferries to switch freight only ferry Cotentin to commence a new weekly service between Le Haver and Rosslare from today. Brittany says a 76% jump in demand has caused the change with the ship sailing Le Havre at 19:00 on Fridays and Rosslare next day at 17:45 with a crossing time of around 19-20 hours.

At 165 metres the vessel can accommodate 120 freight units with the same number of cabins. The new line will complement the Cherbourg – Rosslare maritime route, operated by Brittany Ferries with Connemara since the beginning of 2020. FRANCE – Worldwide Flight Services (WFS) has won a new three-year contract to provide cargo handling, cargo towing and trucking services for EVA Air in France.

The Taiwanese international airline currently operates three Boeing 777 and 787 flights per week from Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport to Taipei, with additional frequencies expected during the term of this extended contract. EVA Air, which has been a customer of WFS in France since November 1993, has traffic rights for daily Paris-Taipei services and also uses WFS’ regional transport services in France to feed cargo to its flights ex Paris CDG, and to connect customers across France. WORLDWIDE – It seems Kuehne+Nagel is finding a market for all that synthetic fuel it agreed to buy last month. The group is offering customers the option to purchase Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) for each shipment going by the weight of each consignment.

This new add-on is available on all Kuehne+Nagel air freight quoting platforms and channels, allowing customers to choose carbon neutral transport via their preferred online or offline quoting method. The Swiss logistics group says this entitles customers to claim they are negating carbon emissions but as SAF still produces some CO2 emissions, carbon neutrality is achieved by substituting each litre of jet fuel kerosene used with 1.33 litres of SAF. After the booking confirmation, the equivalent volume of SAF is credited from 12.8 million litres of SAF available to Kuehne+Nagel while the customer receives an authorised certificate confirming the emissions saving for purposes of scope three reporting.

PHILIPPINES – CEVA Logistics has won a three year contract with Diageo to handle warehousing and value-added services in the Philippines for the international beverage group. Under the terms of the contract, Diageo will become one of the first clients at the soon-to-be-completed CEVA Logistics Ruhale Taguig warehouse in southeast Manila. CEVA will manage full distribution centre operations for Diageo’s range of products, including a temperature-controlled section for domestic distribution throughout the Philippines.

CEVA will also provide tax stamping and labelling of more than four million bottles each year and, through its warehouse management software integrated with Diageo’s enterprise resource planning platform, CEVA will have full transparency to enable improved monitoring of the entire operation. EGYPT – AD Ports Group, a facilitator of trade and logistics, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Egyptian Group for Multipurpose Terminals (EGMPT), the commercial arm of the Egyptian Ministry of Transportation, for the development and operation of a multipurpose terminal in Safaga Port. Under the MoU, AD Ports Group will explore investment opportunities and conduct feasibility and local market studies related to developing and operating a multipurpose terminal in Safaga Port, with both parties benefitting from the exchange of expertise and best practices.

The MoU aims to support the growth of the Middle East’s industrial and logistics sectors, as well as assist in opening new markets for Egyptian exports via direct maritime routes across the Arabian Gulf, East Asia, and Africa regions.

Photo: Lumo trains undergoing preparation.