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Home3PL/4PLAirAsia to launch cargo service for agrifood products

AirAsia to launch cargo service for agrifood products

  • AirAsia’s new Teleport service eyes transport of Mindanao agricultural goods to local and eventually overseas destinations
  • Teleport is currently testing the market for its food delivery service in Metro Manila and will soon launch in Davao
  • Teleport is an end-to-end logistics provider that will offer cargo freight service to clients through AirAsia’s fleet of aircraft
  • Riders will deliver goods to customers’ doorsteps

Budget airline AirAsia wants to transport Mindanao agricultural goods to locations across the Philippines and eventually overseas as it conducts market tests for its new logistics service, Teleport.

In a recent webinar organized by the Davao City Chamber of Commerce and Industry, AirAsia Philippines chief executive officer Ricardo Isla said Teleport is targeting to move farm produce, like fruits and seafood, once the service is fully operational.

Teleport is an end-to-end logistics provider that offers cargo freight service to clients through AirAsia’s fleet of aircraft. Once the goods reach their destination, its riders will then deliver the goods to the customers’ doorsteps.

Teleport is leveraging on AirAsia’s fleet of 24 Airbus 8320 aircraft to provide chartered cargo freight service. Each plane has a capacity of 8 tons to 9 tons in its belly, while the cabin has a capacity of about 5 tons to 7 tons.

“Teleport has a huge advantage of using AirAsia’s fleet,” which connects 164 destinations worldwide, of which 125 are in Southeast Asia, Isla said.

“We cannot wait for AirAsia to reopen its international flights so that we will be able to transport not only within domestic but international [destinations] too. Fingers crossed, we’re hoping that will happen by the fourth quarter,” he said.

Teleport is in the midst of testing the market for its food delivery service in Metro Manila and will soon launch in Davao. It is working with fast-food chain McDonald’s to deliver food orders, but will eventually start to deliver parcels.

Isla said AirAsia considers Mindanao, specifically Davao, as an area of concentration, being one of the airline’s biggest cargo customers.

“Hopefully we can also provide logistics service for Mindanao’s produce,” Isla said.

Mindanao contributes more than 30% to the national food trade, with fresh and processed fruits, coconut products, aquaculture products, and rubber among its top exports.

Among the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) member countries, Malaysia was the top destination of the country’s agricultural exports in the fourth quarter of 2020, with US$71.60 million or 40.9% of the total agricultural exports to the ASEAN market, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority.

Isla said AirAsia will work with the Davao business chamber to find partners in Mindanao.

Malou Monteverde, president of the Davao City business chamber, said although world trade is expected to slow down due to the pandemic, the air cargo industry is in a good position to capture growing specialized cargo segments, such as pharmaceuticals and perishables, which need fast delivery times.

She anticipates strong demand for these products especially from Asia’s growing population.

While the air cargo industry has grown in the past few years, there remain pain points because of the lack of data sharing and different speeds of digitalization among stakeholders.

“These impede the industry from achieving greater efficiency, productivity, and supply chain visibility,” Monteverde said.

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