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FFFAI biennial convention in Cochin: Registration closes on December 31

The 23 Biennial Convention of the Federation of Freight Forwarders’ Associations in India (FFFAI), which is being held from January 19 to 21, 2017, at Crowne Plaza Hotel, Cochin in Kerala, is eto witness more than 400 delegates from across the country. For facilitating early registrations FFFAI announced ‘Super Early Bird’ and ‘Early Bird’ Registration schemes to benefit the delegates. While ‘Super Early Bird’ registration was closed on November 30, 2016, ‘Early Bird’ registration will be closed on December 31 and the convention registration will be closed on January 15, 2017. Online registration and registration forms are available at FFFAI website www.fffai.org. With the theme ‘Indian Customs Broker-Trusted Single Entity Logistician-Capable and Dynamic’, the convention will discuss several pressing issues. The topics include GST – What to Accept and How to Adapt, Future of Logistics Services – Survival in Digital and Liberalised Era – Adapting to Digital and Cashless, Ladies Session – Assuring Gender Equalisation in Logistics the Way Forward, The Future of Customs Clearance in India, Freight Forwarding and Customs Brokerage Worldwide, Technology and Skilling – Innovations Required for Survival and Family Business – Induction, Continuation & Corportisation. There will be a specific focus on international market trends, economic developments in India and fast changing policies & compliances,” informs Amit Kamat, Honorary Secretary, FFFAI.

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FFFAI signs MoU with Kale Logistics facilitating eVGM filing for members

Kale Logistics Solutions and Federation of Freight Forwarders’ Associations in India (FFFAI) have signed a MoU, whereby Kale’s eVGM platform will be made available to its members for eVGM filing. The e-VGM Platform from Kale allows exporter, CHA/CB, CFS/ICD, shipping lines/liner agent record, declare and transmit the Verified Gross Mass (VGM) electronically. It is not just compliant with industry regulations but has many added features like; a dedicated secure DG Shipping approved website, digital signature enabled, EDI connectivity to shipping lines, weighbridge software integration for tamper proof transmission of container weight, automated alerts, dashboard view and mobile application. Kale’s eVGM platform will be accessible to FFFAI members through FFFAI website for filing eVGM to shipping lines.

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DHL Express strengthens its Gujarat operations through Vadodara

DHL Express has expanded its Gujarat operations with the launch of a new service centre in Vadodara. The 8,500 sq ft facility caters to Vadodara city and the surrounding areas of Savli, Halol, Waghodia, Por and Padra covering a radius of approximately 45 km. RS Subramanian, Senior Vice President & Country Manager, DHL Express India, said, “For DHL, the state of Gujarat represents a huge growth opportunity. Our continuing investments in Ahmedabad, the recent facility in Surat and now this new service facility at Vadodara – are testimonies to its potential. Vadodara is also strategically located to take advantage of the developing golden quadrilateral highway network that will connect Chennai, Kolkata, Mumbai and Delhi.”

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MIAL opens export heavy and bonded cargo terminal

Mumbai International Airport (MIAL) has launched a dedicated cargo terminal for bonded and heavy export cargo at city’s Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport (CSIA) which is one of the busiest airports in Asia. With this, CSIA’s cargo handling capacity will increase to seven lakh tonne annually from around four lakh tonne at present. The heavy cargo includes machinery, non-perishable pharma, automobile, engineering products, etc. The terminal will start operations from December 14, 2016. According to MIAL, the new process management deployed, along with incremental export capacity, will reduce the dwell time to a considerable extent. “The new facility will complement the existing Export Zone by increasing efficiency through faster admittance of cargo, swift turnaround of vehicles and overall reduction in handling dwell time with new process management. With this additional facility, CSIA can now offload more than 50 trucks at a time,” said an airport insider. Earlier, the average offloading capacity was about 30 trucks.

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Cathay Pacific plans to expand in India

Lifted by solid growth in cargo traffic, Cathay Pacific Airways plans to increase frequency of its freighter services to Indian cities. The Hong Kong based airline has freight services to six Indian cities and there are 25 freighter departures every week from India. A sign of significant market potential in the freighter segment, the carrier has seen an eight per cent jump in cargo volumes in first nine months (January-September) of this year. “At this moment, we plan to optimise our network base in India and want to increase our frequency here,” Mark Sutch, General Manager – Cargo Sales & Marketing, Cathay Pacific. The carrier provides freighter services from Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, Bengaluru, Hyderabad and Kolkata. The twice-a-week service between Kolkata and Hong Kong was launched in March last year.

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DHL eCommerce invests EUR70 million to strengthen India’s e-commerce sector

DHL eCommerce is investing EUR70 million (Rs 51,184 lakh) to strengthen its operations to meet the fast-growing demand for quality e-commerce logistics services in India. Through its subsidiary Blue Dart Express, this investment will go into the expansion of its air hubs in Delhi and Mumbai which are part of its network of 13 air hubs in India. The latest investment supports the growth of B2C e-commerce in India, and is part of the company’s broader plan to aggressively expand across Asia Pacific. “The expanded facilities in Delhi and Mumbai, coupled with our flexible and easy-to-use e-fulfillment solutions, will enable e-commerce sellers to distribute their products to over 34,000 domestic locations effectively. As the national leader in door-to-door delivery in India, our deliveries are fully managed end-to-end, including routing, sorting and shipping goods efficiently from the warehouse to customers’ doorstep, to provide customers with consistent service excellence. Our EUR70 million investment will ensure that we continue to lay a strong foundation to offer even greater support to our e-commerce customers,” said Anil Khanna, Managing Director, Blue Dart Express.

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ACAAI 2016 to focus on energising the air cargo industry

Air Cargo Agents Association of India (ACAAI) is organising its annual convention at a European destination, for the first time in its history, from November 16-19, 2016. “Europe is a strategic and traditional stronghold from Indian exports’ point of view, albeit we are witnessing sluggish growth at present. This edition is expected to witness the presence of dignitaries apart from more than 400 ACAAI delegates from across India,” informs, Sunil Arora, Secretary General & Chairman Convention, ACAAI. “The list of dignitaries includes the Indian Ambassador to Greece and it is expected to include high officials from the Ministry of Civil Aviation and Ministry of Commerce & Industry, Government of India. In addition, several overseas delegates from various trade associations will also be present at the convention to interact with their present and prospective Indian partners,” he adds.

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Demonetising Currency: EICI appeals to extend exemption deadline for toll plazas

Express Industry Council of India (EICI) and its members welcomed the Prime Minister’s announcement to demonetise Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 notes. “There are some procedural issues that express companies have been facing while plying their vehicles carrying urgently required express shipments on the national high ways. The vehicles must pass multiple toll plazas and drivers carry cash to pay the toll charges,” says, Vijay Kumar, Chief Operating Officer, EICI. While every effort is being made by our members to ensure their drivers carry the new higher denomination notes as well as use other alternative payment systems available post November 11,2016, due to unprecedented rush in the banks as well as limits for cash withdrawals, it is turning out to be difficult to implement.

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DHL invests in Indore, opens its first service centre in Madhya Pradesh

DHL invested in the industrial hub of Madhya Pradesh with the opening of its first facility in Indore. This service centre will cater to Indore and its nearby towns such as Dewas and Pithampur – a major Special Economic Zone (SEZ) and one of the largest hubs for the manufacturing industry in the country. Covering an approximate radius of 15km, this will reduce the transit time for the import and export of shipments. Additionally, the service center’s proximity to the airport will warrant early deliveries and accommodate to later cut offs times.

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ACAAI Convention: An event for ‘business first’

Air Cargo Agents Association of India’s (ACAAI) 43rd convention, that is scheduled from November 16-19, 2016 in Athens, Greece convention will be a full of serious business discussions and leisure programmes. Says Sunil Arora, Secretary General & Chairman Convention, ACAAI, “Athens is a lucrative destination for tourism and, thus, the 43rd convention would make a difference by adding value for precious time and money. We will analyse the current global economic scenario and its impact on the Exim industry, particularly on air cargo industry in India. Apart from the rapid changes in the dynamics of economy, we would also focus on challenges from technology, e-commerce, safety/security aspects, profitability, etc.” “There will be five business sessions and out of them three will follow round-table format. Topics of the business sessions are: Revitalising Air Cargo – Global Recession, Securing the Air Cargo Supply Chain, Airline – Forwarder Synergy, Technology Driven Process and Quality and Cost – The Management Challenge & Future Vision. We are expecting exchange of radical ideas to sail through turbulences we face very often,” informs Arora.

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