The Pharma collaboration with Belgium will establish a fully compliant origin-to-destination pharma air corridor
Led by the Department of Health–Abu Dhabi, the Hope Consortium, Khalifa University of Science and Technology, and Abu Dhabi Airports Company have collaborated to strengthen the Emirate’s positioning as a life science hub.
Abu Dhabi has set its sights on Belgium, as a leading global pharmaceutical hub, to establish a global distribution corridor to serve the world in vaccine delivery and future life science needs. The collaboration builds on the capabilities of Abu Dhabi’s healthcare sector as a leading life sciences hub and the efforts of the HOPE Consortium in providing vaccine solutions for the world.
This initiative entailed a delegation visit from Belgium to Abu Dhabi, hosted by the Department of Health – Abu Dhabi (DoH). The visit saw the signing of two declarations of collaboration between Belgium and Abu Dhabi, witnessed by Abdullah bin Mohammed Al Hamed, Chairman of DoH (Department of Health) and Peter Claes, Ambassador of Belgium in the UAE.
The first agreement was between the HOPE Consortium, Abu Dhabi Airports Company (ADAC), Brussels Airport Company and Pharma.Aero. Led by the Department of Health – Abu Dhabi, the regulator of the healthcare sector in the emirate, the collaboration aims to establish a fully compliant origin-to-destination pharma air corridor between Abu Dhabi and Brussels Airports.
The dedicated pharma trade lane will unite key compliant and sector certified supply chain stakeholders, including forwarders and ground handling agents.
World-class pharma logistics hub
“Our goal is to enhance Abu Dhabi’s positioning as a world-class pharma logistics hub and a destination focused on global welfare by investing in strategic public and private sector collaborations, and the allocation of expertise and resources,” commented Dr. Jamal Al Kaabi, Undersecretary of the Department of Health, Abu Dhabi.
Earlier this year, a delegation from the HOPE Consortium met with pharmaceutical industry stakeholders in Brussels to showcase Abu Dhabi’s global vaccine distribution success. Thanks to its network of partners, the HOPE Consortium has handled over 200 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines, contributing to vaccination programmes in over 40 global destinations.
Western Europe currently ranks as the world’s second-largest pharmaceutical export market with a total export value of nearly EUR 42bn (US$ 47.57bn) in 2020. “Brussels Airport is the leading hub serving the pharmaceutical and life sciences industry in Europe with over 750 million vaccines handled at the airport, serving 60 destinations worldwide,” stated Nathan De Valck, Head of Cargo, Brussels Airport.
Captain Mohamed Juma Al Shamisi, Chairman of the HOPE Consortium Executive Committee and Group CEO of AD Ports Group, added that the proactive sharing of knowledge and expertise among stakeholders remains vital to the partnership’s ongoing success. “The HOPE Consortium, along with our partners, has developed one of the most extensive end-to-end vaccine supply chains, capable of delivering millions of Covid-19 vaccines anywhere around the globe,” he noted.
“Working together, we have successfully resolved some of the major challenges associated with vaccine logistics, and we are pleased to have the opportunity to showcase our capabilities and pass on our studies to students attending the Masterclass. At the same time, we look forward to further strengthening the relationship between Abu Dhabi and Belgium through the establishment of a future pharma corridor, benefiting the region and the world,” continued Capt. Al Shamsi.
The development of the dedicated Pharma Air Corridor will leverage API-IoT devices-webforms-internet shared with all relevant stakeholders to monitor pharma shipments closely. “Our relationship with Etihad Cargo and the HOPE Consortium sharing best practices makes us confident that the corridor will promote commitment for transparency with customers and stakeholders,” observed Nathan De Valck who also serves as Chairman of Pharma.Aero.
The other declaration of collaboration was signed by the HOPE Consortium, Pharma.Aero, Khalifa University of Science and Technology and the University of Antwerp to host the second edition of the ‘Pharma Logistics Masterclass’, a course focused on critical challenges and developments in pharma supply chains and logistics, by Khalifa University in Abu Dhabi from in early September 2022.
“We are excited to bring the second Masterclass to Abu Dhabi. The HOPE Consortium partners and Khalifa University have extended great support and offer a unique platform to be shared with the participants of the next Masterclass,” remarked Prof. Dr. Roel Gevaers, University of Antwerp and Chair of the Organizing Committee.
“Pharma.Aero’s vision and mission underline fostering collaboration. By continuously giving insights and sharing the latest changes between pharmaceutical companies, industry stakeholders and the academic world, the overall knowledge and the quality of the pharma and MedTec supply chain improves,” said Frank Van Gelder, Secretary General, Pharma.Aero and Co-chair, the ‘Pharma Logistics Masterclass’.
Abu Dhabi Masterclass
“We believe the Masterclass in Abu Dhabi will further affirm our strong commitment to delivering top quality academic and professional programs that benefit students and youth interested in charting their future career in this area,” stressed Dr. Arif Sultan Al Hammadi, Executive Vice-President, Khalifa University.
The agreement was welcomed by Dr. Ghalia Ali Al Humaidan, Chargé D’Affaires of the UAE Mission to Belgium. “This commitment between the UAE and Belgium further expands the effectiveness of a collaborative approach to addressing pharmaceutical demand flows between the two regions,” she added. “Abu Dhabi has developed into a world hub for the distribution of pharmaceuticals. The emirate has done so in close cooperation and synergy with Brussels Airport,” concluded Ambassador Claes.