As part of the national strategy for the logistics services sector, and in pursuit of providing the best solutions and services contributing to its role in achieving the most effective customs practices in the field of freight, and consolidating joint relations within the field, the Kingdom of Bahrain along with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, signed a joint cooperation customs agreement on December 30, 2019. The agreement entailed a mutual recognition of the Economic Operator program approved by both parties, which creates a single-entry point that enhances intra-regional trade through coordinated and sustainable custom procedures.
Under the instructions of His Royal Highness Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, the Crown Prince and Prime Minister, regarding the participation of all sectors in advancing the achievement of the provisions of the recovery plan, and in compliance with his directives focusing on developing promising sectors in the Kingdom, including the logistics sector, BAS initiated the launch of a project to modernize the cargo cooling units for air cargo parcels and goods located on the western side of Bahrain International Airport. BAS worked to enhance and expand the facilities of the refrigeration facility to meet all the storage requirements of goods imported via airfreight in Bahrain.
On this occasion, the Chairman of BAS, Mr. Nabeel Khalid Kanoo, said: “In compliance with the company’s fulfilment of the national plans related to the development of the logistics services sector, as well as the mutual agreement with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the idea of modernizing refrigeration units at Bahrain International Airport arose to ship cosmetics and later on pharmaceuticals to ensure their arrival with utmost quality due to the reliable storage unit/method.”
He added: “The aim of the newly developed facility is to facilitate the arrival of such goods imported from abroad to Bahrain International Airport, and then transporting them via land freight to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia without the need of re-inspection. BAS is aware of the positive impact this step will have on increasing incoming shipments to Bahrain and enhancing the movement of freight and international transportation of goods through Bahrain, as many airfreight companies prefer to land in the Kingdom to transport their goods to KSA. The company has already received several trucking orders for KSA from prominent freight service providers including CargoLux and LH, which has boosted ground transportation business at BAS. This service has been activated to ship cosmetics as a first step, with future directions to include pharmaceutical preparations as soon as possible to meet the pharmaceutical needs in Bahrain and the region.”
Mr. Mohamed Khalil Ahmed, CEO of BAS commented: “The updates that were made to the refrigeration units included the installation of a Building Management System (BMS) in order to automate the building and achieve higher efficiency of automatic control and monitoring of all equipment and devices to avoid any technical errors that may affect storage safety.”
He added: “The sizes of the Cold Rooms have also been expanded to double the storage capacity in the Cargo Cooling Facility to meet the demand for storing pharmaceutical and cosmetic products. Furthermore, two additional cold rooms have been added with a total area of 415 square meters operating at a temperature of (15-25 degrees Celsius), which has led to the separation of the cold store into three sections, one of which is specialized in storing food items, one for medicines and pharmaceuticals, and lastly cosmetics. The project also included modernizing the approved storage freezers to operate at a controlled temperature of – 20, and adding two chillers to the previous chiller unit, which made the total area of the refrigeration units in the facility reach 222.7 square meters, with a cooling degree of up to 2 – 8 degrees Celsius.”
BAS seeks though the development of BAS’ Cargo Cooling Facility in obtaining the ‘CEIV’ certificate granted to the company by the Center of Excellence for Independent Validators in Pharmaceutical Logistics, which is a certification given to trusted carriers for the shipment of time- and temperature- sensitive products. This initiative will also contribute to consolidating the Kingdom’s position on the map of logistics services and trade exchange, as a preferred destination for airfreight in the region.