Panalpina CEO Stefan Karlen has officially opened the company’s new logistics manufacturing center in Dubai South. The 40,000 m2 facility is adjacent to Al Maktoum International Airport and Panalpina says they expect to grow their logistics and freight forwarding business in the Middle East, Africa and CIS (MEAC) region. Three times bigger than the previous facility and with state-of-the-art infrastructure, it offers plenty of room to further grow with both existing and new customers.
“Dubai, strategically located between East and West, and with excellent airport, port and road connections, is ideal for operating a regional supply chain hub for the Middle East, Africa and CIS,” said Mr. Karlen at the opening ceremony in Dubai South. “We first set foot in the United Arab Emirates 25 years ago and today’s official inauguration of our new logistics manufacturing center, which was built exactly to our business needs and those of our customers, opens a new exciting chapter for our logistics and freight forwarding activities in the region. It is the biggest facility of this type that we currently operate.”
His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum commented: “We highly welcome Panalpina’s continued strong commitment in the UAE and share the company’s vision of how supply chains in a circular economy are shaping the future. The new logistics center will further strengthen the relationship between Panalpina and Dubai South and help attract additional industries to the region such as high fashion, automotive, and aerospace as well as research organizations and think tanks.”
The site is located in Dubai Logistics City and forms part of the bonded logistics corridor that links the adjacent Al Maktoum International Airport and nearby Jebel Ali Port. Most of the operational space of 37,800 m2 is used for inbound to manufacturing (I2M) and vendor managed inventory (VMI) services in support of Logistics Manufacturing Services (LMS) and also for outbound distribution services. There are separate areas for the break-down or build-up of air freight, for the safe intermediary storage of valuable goods, and for other special activities.
Goods are kept and handled in clean and fully air-conditioned chambers where the room climate is monitored and controlled around the clock. “Customers are increasingly demanding that their products be protected against heat and humidity. Our new facility is one of only few of this size in Dubai that can offer this,” explained Pascal Sieber, Panalpina managing director for the United Arab Emirates.
Panalpina is also seeing increased demand for reverse logistics including diagnostics and ultimately repairs for their customers’ products. “Our hub here in Dubai is designed to take advantage of the changing dynamics of supply chains. With the trend of distributed manufacturing close to point of consumption, the emphasis on sustainability, the Internet of Things and the makerspace movement, as well as technological advances such as additive manufacturing, we will see more logistics facilities like this one in the future, where we can add value to our customers’ supply chains,” said Mike Wilson, global head of Logistics and Manufacturing at Panalpina.