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DHL US$210 mn investment boosts Asian operation
Sep '08
DHL, the world's leading express and logistics company, announced the completion of its US$110 million Central Asia Hub (CAH) expansion. With a total investment of US$210 million, the facility is the first large-scale automated Express hub in Asia Pacific and significantly boosts DHL's operational capability in Asia.

Situated at the Hong Kong International Airport, the Central Asia Hub has doubled in size to 35,000 sqm - about the size of 120 tennis courts - and is expected to handle 40 million shipments this year. With the expansion, the highly sophisticated and automated facility has a throughput of 75,000 pieces per hour (pph) of flyers and conveyable shipments, an increase of 114 per cent compared to the 35,000 pph throughput capacity before the expansion. With the automation, the throughput cycle time has been further reduced from 12 minutes to just 7 minutes.

“Asia Pacific continues to be a key growth driver - in the first half of 2008, we grew 13 per cent year-on-year. The expansion of the CAH is a testament to the continued growth of intra-Asia trade and the Asia-Europe trade lane. Currently, over 60 per cent of express cargo processed by the Central Asia Hub is intra-Asia Pacific shipments, a figure we expect to continue to grow alongside rising intra-regional trade,” said Dan McHugh, CEO, DHL Express Asia Pacific.

Originally slated for completion in 2013, the expansion of the CAH well ahead of schedule underscores the growth and potential DHL sees in the region. Eva Cheng, Secretary for Transport and Housing said: “The further expansion of DHL's Central Asia Hub is a testament to the continued strategic importance and relevance of the Hong Kong International Airport within the region. It is also a vote of confidence by the world's largest express integrator of Hong Kong's strength as an aviation and logistics hub.”

With over 40 per cent market share and US$2.2 billion invested in the region, DHL's investment in the CAH provides the core backbone to further enhance service excellence to extend its market-leading position in Asia Pacific.

“Strategically located within a four-hour flight time to major cities in Asia Pacific, the CAH is complemented by a well-established Asia Air Network which is served by more than 20 aircraft and over 500 commercial daily flights. The expansion of the CAH brings with it heightened speed, efficiency, accuracy and significantly bolsters DHL's operational capacity in Asia Pacific,” said Jerry Hsu, President, Greater China Area, DHL Express.

Advanced automation & technology for a highly efficient Central Asia Hub
The increased throughput of the automated CAH is made possible because of an advanced Autosort system which can handle 35,000 conveyable shipments and 40,000 flyers per hour.

Key automated features of the facility include a bank of singulators which arrange parcels into a single queue, six-sided camera scanners which scan all sides of conveyable shipments, and a shoe sorter matrix which directs the shipments to the relevant chutes according to their destination be it Beijing, Singapore, Tokyo, Osaka, Nagoya, Shanghai, Seoul, Bangkok, Delhi etc.

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