By Helen Norman
Cainiao Smart Logistics Network, the logistics arm of Alibaba Group, has announced a partnership with Ethiopian Airlines to launch a cold chain air freight service for the transportation of temperature-controlled medicines from Shenzhen Airport, China’s first medical cross-border cold chain facility.
Temperature-controlled medicines will be distributed twice a week from Shenzhen to Africa, and to the rest of the world via Dubai and Addis Ababa.
The partnership represents China’s first cross-border medical cold chain route to be operated regularly and is certified to transport temperature-controlled medicines including Covid-19 vaccines.
“Cainiao’s global logistics network spans over 200 countries and regions, providing end-to-end integrated logistics services, including digital customs clearance capabilities,” said James Zhao, general manager of Cainiao International Supply Chain. “The launch of the cold chain air freight has further bolstered our global logistics capabilities, and allow us to offer a one-stop solution for the global distribution of medical products such as the Covid-19 vaccines.”
Tewolde GebreMariam, Ethiopian Group CEO, added, “Ethiopian Airlines will repeat its remarkable and globally recognized success in leading the fast delivery of PPEs few months ago with similar delivery speed, professional handling and maintaining the cold chain during the forthcoming global distribution of the Covid-19 vaccine. In anticipation of the vaccine release, we will be at the forefront to further discharge our responsibility in the distribution of the vaccine across the globe.”
Cainiao’s launch of its Green Channel Initiative this year to fight the pandemic has helped in the distribution of 250 million pieces of PPEs, including Covid-19 test kits, to medical suppliers in more than 150 countries and regions. In collaboration with its partners, Cainiao has also helped to transport medical relief items for international organizations during the pandemic.