Cathay Pacific Cargo has reached a significant milestone in the global effort against the pandemic after the airline handled and delivered its 50 millionth dose of Covid-19 vaccine from Frankfurt to Hong Kong. Early work on the handling and logistics of vaccines since last summer has led the Hong Kong-based carrier to create its own ‘bespoke’ vaccine solution, complete with a tracking to system to ensure proper monitoring of temperature-sensitive cargo. The airline has been instrumental in bringing home vaccines for the Hong Kong population and is leading the way in promoting the need to increase vaccination rates. “I am pleased that our own staff have taken the lead on this: our “Arm Up” campaign has seen 99 per cent of our pilots and 91 per cent of our cabin crew fully vaccinated,” said George Edmunds,GM Cargo Commercial. The airline relied on the strength of its network to fly vaccine shipments from the manufacturing centres overall the globe to a range of destinations, including included Bangladesh, Brazil, Mexico, Malaysia, Thailand, India, Indonesia, Nicaragua, Jamaica, Guyana and the Philippines. In a recent mission, Cathay Pacific moved three consignments of coronavirus with interline partner ANA Cargo as part of a donation by Japan to Bangladesh through the Covax initiative. Together the airline partners have already uplifted 750,000 doses and will delivered a total of 3 million doses from Japan to Dhaka via Hong Kong. Cathay said the shipment of vaccines has stimulated further improvements in the quality and capacity for pharmaceutical shipments.Its ground handling unit is investing in new cool rooms and smart mobile cold boxes at the airline’s cargo terminal. In July, the airline saw cargo capacity up 12.1 percent month-on-month, driven by full resumption of its freighter schedule and a 33 percent increase in cargo-only passenger flights. “All sales regions and route groups recorded healthy tonnage growth proportional to the increase in capacity, ensuring we sustained a high load factor of 81.8% across the month,” the airline expressed in a statement. For the month, the Cathay carried 121,600 tonnes of cargo and mail last month, up 19.1 percent compared to the same periond last year, but down 28.4 percent versus July 2019.
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