DHL Express officially opened its new $175m North Asia Hub today, at Shanghai Pudong International Airport, China.
The facility covers 88,000 square metres – roughly the size of 13 football pitches – and can handle 20,000 documents and 20,000 parcels each hour.
The new Shanghai hub has been built with technologies to help reduce its carbon footpring – including energy efficient T5 lighting, a solar-powered hot water system and an energy-saving sortation system that can automatically switch unused components into a sleep mode.
DHL Express says the new hub means faster access to international markets for its customers, with transit times cut by up to a day for connections to major cities in Northern Asia.
Opening the facility, Deutsche Post DHL chief executive Frank Appel also announced plans to invest a further $132m (USD) to add eight dedicated aircraft for routes between Shanghai and North Asia, Europe and the US over the next two years.
Appel, who spoke yesterday of his company’s plans to ramp up its activities in the Asia-Pacific region with a EUR 400m investment over the next few years, said today: “DHL Express North Asia Hub is a logistics milestone in DHL’s Asia Pacific network and the culmination of a multi-hub and aviation strategy that cements our leadership position in terms of connections, convenience and cost-effectiveness.
“With Asia’s leading economies fast integrating and free trade agreements reducing barriers to international commerce, logistics companies need capabilities that are ahead of the curve and offer simplicity, speed and service.”
DHL Express now has four hubs in the Asia Pacific region – at Shanghai, Hong Kong, Bangkok and Singapore – linking more than 70 gateways across the region.
The new North Asia hub can process 20,000 mailpieces and 20,000 parcels each hour
The company has more than 40 aircraft covering 40 countries and territories in the region, with about 690 commercial flights per day.
Phasing in up to 2014, DHL’s eight new freighter aircraft will be operated by partner and equity-held airlines including Polar Air, Aerologic and DHL Air UK, along with other providers.
The aircraft will connect the Shanghai hub with Hong Kong, Osaka and Tokyo as well as DHL hubs in Leipzig, Germany, and in Cincinnati, USA. A new route will also connect Shanghai to East Midlands Airport, near Birmingham in the UK.
DHL said today that it also plans to connect the Shanghai hub with other cities in China and Taiwan, including Incheon, Taipei, Dalian and Qingdao over the next few months, and Beijing and Xiamen in 2013.
Jerry Hsu, chief executive of DHL Express Asia Pacific, said the air fleet upgrades would mean greater flexibility and reliability for customers requiring time-definite services to major cities in North Asia.
Hsu said: “DHL’s latest NAH launch and upcoming planned flight investments follows from continuous enhancement in its Asia Air network. In 2011, DHL added two B747 freighters operated by Polar Air to serve Japan, Korea, and Eastern China. We also upgraded our capacity on the Beijing to Hong Kong route with new Airbus freighter services, and improved the Shanghai to Hong Kong route with a new B747 freighter service.
“In support of China’s ‘Go West’ growth strategy, DHL Express also launched five flights per week between Hong Kong and Chengdu,” added the DHL Express Asia-Pacific CEO.
Source: Post&Parcel/DHL Express