Global Logistics Services (GLS) has announced that its Joint Venture Operating Company, GLS-NAS JV officially commenced cargo handling operations at the Roberts International Airport (RIA) in Monrovia on October 1.
GLS-NAS is the joint venture company set up by Global Logistics Services Inc. (GLS), in partnership with National Aviation Services (NAS) Kuwait, which was formally launched recently at the Farmington Hotel in July of this year.
The joint venture was established with its primary aim to deliver world class aviation services, including the operations of the 25-year air cargo operations concession awarded GLS by the Government of Liberia, according to a press release.
GLS-NAS JV kicked off operations after a three-month transition period that involved specialized training of all RIA cargo staff conducted by International Trainers from Kuwait and Cote D’ivoire with emphasis on HSSE, Cargo Management, Cargo Security, Ramp Operations, Customer-facing challenges.
The capacity building training was focused on IATA standards for General Cargo & Dangerous Goods. Ongoing trainings include heavy equipment, cargo technology, and other specialized trainings for international certifications.
New and ongoing improvements to the cargo operations will see the installation of high-level security systems in partnership with SEGAL Liberia (Liberia’s leading private security firm) and certifications to boost direct export capacity to Europe, which is a current challenge. Other changes include continuous improvement in processes, International Air Travel Association (IATA) service standardization, and development of a temporary cargo holding facility with multi-temperature rooms for perishables, frozen and temp-sensitive goods, and additional training to staff to support this initiative.
The inception staff strength stands about 30 people with 95% Liberians. Once the facility is completed, we expect staff strength of nearly 100 Liberians.
The concession also includes the design, finance, build, maintenance, operation and transfer (DFBMOT) of a new, modern cargo facility at RIA. The new facility is scheduled for completion in 2019 which will greatly complement the new passenger terminal under construction. This facility will greatly improve RIA’s air cargo operations to meet international standards and support export supply chain capacity in the country.
GLS and its affiliate GLS-NAS will like to thank the Liberia Airport Authority, stakeholders, including Dept. of Customs, Board of Airlines, Freight Forwarders, Customs Brokers and the general public for their support in this process intended to improve Liberia’s air cargo sector.
By introducing world class cargo operations to RIA, “we expect to triple the current cargo throughput by driving more efficiency, increasing export capacity, eliminating delays in the clearing process, and improving overall air cargo operations in Liberia,” it said in the release.