Abu Dhabi: Abu Dhabi Ports has acquired 11 new specialised refrigerated vehicles that will enhance the UAE’s COVID-19 vaccine supply chain.
The acquisition, specifically by Abu Dhabi Ports subsidiary, MICCO Logistics, is part of a broader strategy to expand and diversify MICCO’s growing vehicle fleet and boost its final-mile vaccine delivery capability to more than 1.1 million vaccine doses per day.
The vehicles will support the work of the Hope Consortium, an Abu Dhabi-led public-private partnership that aims to deliver large quantities of COVID-19 vaccines locally and globally from its hub in Abu Dhabi. The consortium is directed by the Department of Health (DoH), Abu Dhabi’s health regulator, which has also licensed the vehicles for last-mile delivery.
In a press statement, the Abu Dhabi Media Office announced that the delivery vehicles are connected to “mUnity,” Maqta Gateway’s digital blockchain-enabled solution. This will track the journey of vaccines through the supply chain in real-time, ensuring safe, transparent and efficient product delivery to any location.
“The investment in advanced technology places Abu Dhabi in a strong position to not only offer extended services to its health-care sector partners, but also fulfil the goal of the Hope Consortium to end the pandemic and help chart a sustainable pathway to recovery. Abu Dhabi Ports is committed to diversifying and extending its logistical solutions to accommodate all types of vaccines in the market through our specialised final-mile fleet,” said Robert Sutton, head of logistics at Abu Dhabi Ports.
“By working closely with the DoH, we are ensuring that MICCO is equipped with the most advanced chilled vehicles currently available on the market, elevating our emirate’s logistics capabilities for years to come,” he added.
Equipped with complete data loggers and advanced temperature monitoring, the brand-new fleet will be capable of carrying vaccines, medical equipment or pharmaceutical products from Abu Dhabi Ports’ 19,000-square-metre cold and ultra-cold storage facility at Khalifa Industrial Zone Abu Dhabi (KIZAD) to health-care centres across the UAE. The fleet has been fitted with cooling equipment to support handling of vaccines requiring a temperature range of two degrees Celsius to eight degrees Celsius, as well as -80 degrees Celsius, with the addition of specialised packaging.
“This significant investment serves to boost MICCO’s overall capability to transport vaccines and other sensitive pharmaceuticals to all corners of the UAE safely and efficiently, and across a wide range of temperature bands. Our ability to incorporate advanced digital systems that provide for monitoring and tracking in real-time, assures our customers, including hospitals, clinics, vaccine centres and testing centres, full product transparency and integrity. Through these solutions, we are positively reinforcing Abu Dhabi’s supply chain and its capability to tackle one of the greatest logistical challenges of our age,” said Clifford D’souza, executive vice-president and chief operational officer at Micco Logistics.
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With its fleet and through its partnerships, the Hope Consortium aims to deliver 18 billion vaccine doses by the end of the year. In addition to the DoH and Abu Dhabi Ports, the Consortium includes Etihad Cargo, container solutions provider SkyCell, procurement firm Rafed and digital security provider Maqta Gateway.