Even 7 months after the dedicated cargo terminal was inaugurated at the Chandigarh International Airport, its cargo handling dreams are still waiting to come true as it awaits approvals from the Customs. The dedicated cargo facility was announced 6 years after the Airport gained the International status and was being hailed to be the biggest in North India after the Indira Gandhi International Airport in Delhi.
Though the approval from security clearances is in, that from customs is still awaited,”Rakesh Dembla, CEO, Chandigarh International Airport Limited (CHAIL)
Back in November, when it was inaugurated, the Airport authorities had also decided on the freight rates for domestic and international cargo moving to and from the cargo complex, with 5 sheds spread over 14,127 square metres.
While the Chandigarh International Airport has a common screening facility for domestic cargo, the operating airlines are handling goods on their own. The dedicated cargo complex, once operational, would provide better access to cargo in domestic and international markets. At present, the goods are first transferred to the Delhi International Airport by road, where they are lined up for 24 to 48 hours before being loaded on an aircraft.
Considering that in the present scenario, air cargo is no longer a step-child to the mainstream passenger business, it has become increasingly vital for airports to have a dedicated cargo complex. As described by experts, a dedicated cargo complex boasts of features like superior flight navigation systems, outstanding infrastructure, excellent road connections, and dedicated cargo & ground handling capabilities. They are also able to cater to perishables and temperature sensitive goods with their cold storage facilities.