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UAE's Hope Consortium, Astral Aviation to offer vaccine distribution solutions in Africa

Wam/Abu Dhabi
Filed on September 23, 2021

(Reuters file)

The alliance will ensure timely delivery of vaccines and critical supplies to all 54 African nations

Abu Dhabi's Hope Consortium has partnered with Kenya-based cargo airline, Astral Aviation, to offer vaccine distribution solutions to Africa.

The partnership highlights the Hope Consortium’s efforts in reinforcing partnerships that focus on fighting the Covid-19 pandemic, as well as fulfilling the organisation’s mission as a global logistics facilitator, by aiding in vaccine delivery.

As part of the agreement, both entities will focus on intra-African cooperation to enhance vaccine distribution within the African continent.

The Hope Consortium will utilise Astral Aviation’s comprehensive network, technologies and market expertise, to support its global objective of facilitating vaccine availability with a specific emphasis on the African continent.

The alliance will ensure timely delivery of vaccines and critical supplies to all 54 African nations.

Astral Aviation operates a diverse fleet of 14 freighter aircraft and provides innovative, flexible and cost-effective UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle) and UAS (Unmanned Aerial Systems) integrated drone-based solutions, as well as warehousing solutions to both in-store and remote locations.

This synergetic collaboration with the Hope Consortium will see Astral Aviation provide capacity for vaccine deliveries on its scheduled and charter freighter network, in addition to drone solutions and systems to Africa, to facilitate immunisation programmes.

Commenting on the partnership, Sanjeev Gadhia, CEO of Astral Aviation, said: "We are truly honoured to partner with the Hope Consortium and participate in the critical distribution of Covid-19 vaccines, based on our track record in performing humanitarian initiatives and vaccine flights within Africa."

"Astral will add further technological and warehousing solutions for the distribution of the Covid-19 vaccines from the hub in Abu Dhabi, to all the 54 countries in Africa directly or via its Nairobi Hub, which occupies 9,000sqm of cold-storage facilities."

Astral has also been selected by UNICEF to perform vaccine flights for Covax and the African Union via the African Medical Supplies Platform.

Through this partnership, the Hope Consortium furthers its end-to-end supply chains required to distribute vaccines from their base in Abu Dhabi to all African countries.

It has also geared its operations to transport millions of critical Covid-19 vaccines to any country in need and thus far has handled over 100 million vaccine doses across 40 countries.

Robert Sutton, head of logistics cluster at Abu Dhabi Ports, said: "Africa has always been a high priority market for the Hope Consortium, and to that end, we are pleased to join hands with Astral Aviation."

"Our partnership with Astral Aviation is another benchmark towards our commitment to serving every country, region and locale. We are confident that this partnership will help enhance HOPE Consortium’s efforts in Africa and ensure that no one is left behind in the quest against the pandemic."





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