SATS Ltd. (SATS) has announced that its latest subsidiary Asia Airfreight Terminal Co. Ltd. (AAT) has unveiled its new AAT COOLPORT, which is Hong Kong's first on-airport temperature-controlled facility.
It said that the new cold chain facility is built to ensure cold chain integrity for perishable and pharmaceutical airfreight.
SATS noted that AAT's COOLPORT, situated strategically within the world's busiest air cargo hub, is the second such purpose-built facility in the SATS ecosystem.
It replicates the features of Asia's first cold chain facility SATS COOLPORT at Singapore Changi Airport.
In its statement, SATS noted that customers will be able to enjoy swift and seamless transportation of temperature-sensitive shipments and gain assurance that their cargo is handled and stored under strict temperature monitoring.
Increased cold chain capacity
SATS added that the AAT COOLPORT is expected to increase AAT's handling capacity for such cargo by 50%, which will further uphold the status of Hong Kong International Airport as a global hub for perishables and pharmaceuticals.
"AAT COOLPORT is a prime showcase of our twin growth engine strategy in action. While driving operational excellence, we are replicating our capabilities overseas to harness the power of network effects and deliver innovative value-added services to customers," said Kerry Mok, president and chief executive officer, SATS, adding that the pandemic, as well as growth in demand for fresh and frozen food, have placed immense importance on the need for robust cold chain handling.
"Together with our subsidiaries and ecosystem partners, we will continue to advance our network connectivity strategy in cargo by expanding our presence in leading hubs," Mok added.
SATS said the AAT COOLPORT will offer customers a dedicated temperature-controlled zone, covering the entire cargo handling process including acceptance and delivery, build-up and breakdown, security screening, and storage.
New features include temperature-controlled truck docks with dock shelters that prevent potential disruptions to the cold chain during acceptance or delivery.
X-ray screening is also conducted inside AAT COOLPORT with CCTV surveillance so that cargo can be screened at the correct ambient temperature.
In addition, multi-tiered temperature zones down to -28°C are supported by real-time temperature and humidity monitoring systems, and cargo storage is facilitated by an innovative palletised Unit Load Device (ULD) system, which ensures speedy and easy movement of cargo.
"AAT COOLPORT is strategically designed to interface directly with the airside to facilitate seamless cargo flow," SATS said, adding that there is a dedicated handling area for pharmaceuticals to ensure the integrity of the cold chain when handling pharmaceutical products as they usually require more stringent temperature controls.
The facility has been designed to meet international safety standards.
SATS noted that the COOLPORT at the Hong Kong International Airport is fully certified with IATA CEIV Pharma, IATA CEIV Fresh, and WHO GDP Pharma accreditations.
AAT COOLPORT is a green airfreight terminal that uses environmentally sustainable, nonozone-depleting refrigerant, offering a low global warming potential (GWP) and high performance.
AAT COOLPORT also features double doors, air curtains, speed doors, and thermal insulation panels. All are purpose-built to minimise heat loss and achieve energy savings.
Growing its cargo business, SATS increased its shareholding in AAT to a controlling stake of 65.4% in the previous financial year.
The inaugural ceremony for AAT COOLPORT was attended by senior representatives from Airport Authority Hong Kong, Hong Kong Customs & Excise Department, International Air Transport Association (IATA), Hong Kong Association of Freight Forwarding and Logistics Ltd (HAFFA), and Hong Kong Association of Aircargo Truckers (HAAT) on July 28.