Air, Freight News

Heathrow to double capacity and halve process times

[ November 9, 2015   //   ]

Heathrow airport has unveiled a blue print to double its cargo capacity and halve cargo processing times through a £180million investment in facilities and processes. The plans, unveiled by chief executive John Holland-Kaye at a British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) event on 3 November, include a specialist pharmaceutical storage area and an on-airfield air to air transit facility to shorten connection times from a current average of over six hours.
Heathrow also says it will work with businesses, airlines, IATA, HMRC and the DfT to fully implement e-Freight at Heathrow and become one of the first airports to become 100% digital.
There will also be new truck parking facility for over 100 vehicles, offering secure parking, access control, toilets/showers and dining facilities.
Overall, the measures would halve process time from the current 8-9 hours, to four hours.
“Cargo is essential for UK PLC and Heathrow is its global freight connector, with 26% of all UK goods by value going through the airport. This investment plan will significantly improve our cargo facilities and support British businesses to keep the economy moving, connecting exporters to the world and helping the government reach its £1 trillion export target by 2020.”
John Holland-Kaye said that it would work with stakeholders including freight forwarders, Government, exporters and British businesses to become one of the leading European airports for cargo. The improvements would also encourage airlines to bring cargo friendly aircraft with greater freight capacity to Heathrow, which are typically more modern, greener and quieter.
Freight Transport Association director of global and European policy, Chris Welsh added: “Heathrow’s planned investment and increased freight capacity is excellent news, and exactly the type of commitment that FTA has long been asking for. The significance of air freight is often overlooked, but today’s announcement illustrates that Heathrow Airport has listened very carefully to ourselves and the freight industry. The improvements it is proposing are essential to the growth and success of the UK economy.”