It is evident from facts that Emirates SkyCargo is playing a crucial role in currently booming Sri Lanka’s edible fish exports following the resumption of shipments to Europe. The airline reports that it is currently transporting about 100 tons of edible fish a week from Colombo to markets in Europe and the USA, a noteworthy increase over export volumes that were prevailing before the implementation of the 15-month suspension of exports to Europe in 2015.
In the second half of 2016 alone, Emirates SkyCargo transported more than 2,400 tons of edible fish from Sri Lanka, double the volume it had transported in the corresponding six months of the previous year. The cargo consisted of tuna in fresh, chilled and frozen forms, shrimp, prawns, crabs, lobster, fish maws, sea cucumbers, cuttlefish, squid and sprats to the UK, France, Italy, Japan, Netherlands and the USA.
The export of Sri Lankan fishery products to the European Union resumed in June 2016 and grew by 20 per cent in the year that followed. European markets account for more than 60 per cent of the country’s fish exports, valued at approximately US$ 110 million, benefitting thousands of fishermen and their families.
Commenting on the surge of perishable cargo from Colombo and efficiently handling the same by SkyCargo Mr Kapila Santhapriya, Emirates Cargo Manager, Sri Lanka & Maldives said, “The many innovative facilities developed by Emirates SkyCargo for the transport of perishables including temperature-sensitive seafood combined with our four daily flights from Colombo to Dubai and our global destination network of over 155 cities across 84 countries have made Emirates SkyCargo the market leader and most trusted service provider for perishable cargo in the country.”
He also asserted: “Of particular relevance to edible fish exporters is “Emirates Fresh” – Emirates SkyCargo’s suite of solutions that help maintain the freshness of perishables and fresh consumables during transportation. Emirates Fresh includes services such as prioritised ground handling as well as the use of the Emirates SkyFresh Ventilated Cool Dolly.”
In 2016, Emirates SkyCargo transported close to 400,000 tonnes of perishables across its global network of over 150 destinations. This included products as diverse as salmon from Norway, strawberries from California, flowers from Ecuador, meat from Australia, mangoes from the Indian subcontinent and wine and cheese from France.
Emirates SkyCargo operates a modern fleet of 260 wide-bodied aircraft including 14 freighters – 13 Boeing 777-Fs and one B747-400ERFs. Emirates SkyCargo operates state of the art cool chain facilities at its Emirates SkyCentral cargo hubs at Dubai International Airport and Dubai World Central including over 25,000 square metres of dedicated temperature controlled storage space and reefer trucks operating 24/7 between Dubai World Central and Dubai International airport.