Oman Observer

New cargo terminal at Salalah Airport opens

Operations at the new air cargo terminal at the Salalah Airport started with the arrival of the first cargo flight at 10.30 am and departure of first cargo flight at 11.20 pm on Wednesday.
Dr Ahmed bin Mohammed al Futaisi, Minister of Transport and Communications, inspected the new facility before the actual start of the cargo operations. He was accompanied by Mohammed bin Nasser al Zaabi, CEO of the Public Authority of Civil Aviation (PACA), and Abdullah bin Aqeel al Ibrahim, acting Deputy Governor of Dhofar Governorate. A large number of aviation employees, cargo experts and senior Royal Oman Police (ROP) personnel were present on the occasion.
The cargo terminal is spread over 20,000 square metre area with current annual operational capacity of 50,000 tonnes, which can be expanded up to 100,000 tonnes per year in a phased manner. Dr Al Futaisi expressed happiness over the launch of state-of-the-art facility at the Salalah Airport, which is gaining importance due to its location and the best possible cargo transport facilities through road, air and sea routes.
He put emphasis on the fact that Salalah is fast emerging as an important cargo hub of the governorate and a facility like this would add value to cargo handling system by making it efficient and fast.
The new cargo building is equipped with advanced technologies and advanced facilities to deal with all types of goods. There is facility for fast movement of general cargo while well equipped sections are there for special cargo such as perishable products, live animals, and dangerous goods and materials.
Giving more details about the new air cargo terminal, Ali al Yafai, Commercial and Marketing Manager Salalah Airport, said: “The building is equipped with an automated cargo handling system, which allows smooth handling of cargo containers and pallets. It is also equipped with a sophisticated handling technology to transport and store goods in an organised manner, leading to efficient handling and faster delivery of goods, thus increasing efficiency and productivity.”
“The facility is equipped with special refrigerators to maintain the shelf life of products like fruits, vegetables, frozen meat and pharmaceutical products.
Another important facility is live animal centre, which is spread over 2,500 square meters. It can accommodate all live animals and contains tools and equipment to ensure that the animals are given adequate space and care before being transported or delivered to aircraft,” he said.
The facility, according to Al Yafai, is equipped with a quarantine warehouse and hazardous materials and radioactive materials storage facilities. These facilities can store hazardous materials and radioactive shipments in a safe and isolated environment.
For high value goods there are special rooms as the cargo building is also fully equipped with security and surveillance systems that operate around the clock.
Divided in two floors, the air cargo terminal has 14 loading and off loading stations, offices of import and export and goods clearance. Care has been taken to make the facility a one-stop-shop for efficient and quick handling of goods. It has offices of relevant ministries, Royal Oman Police, other government agencies, airlines and shipping companies.