To strengthen and expand Frankfurt as Europe’s No. 1 Air Cargo Hub


To strengthen and expand Frankfurt as Europe’s No. 1 Air Cargo Hub

Air Cargo Community Frankfurt presents first results – Presentation to customs reduced by a third – Target: 3 million tons of air freight annually by 2020

About one year after its foundation, the Air Cargo Community Frankfurt e.V. is setting the essential accents with which it sustainably promotes and develops the airfreight location of Frankfurt. The representative of the interests of all involved in the air freight process chain in Frankfurt reported specific results today at “transport logistic” in Munich. The intensive involvement of today’s 27 Community members has the objective that Frankfurt can consolidate and extend its position as the European Air Cargo Hub number 1.




Noticeable process optimization

The continuous improvement of processes at the location is clearly the focus of attention for the Community’s work. To this end, all processes in the air cargo supply chain are being accurately documented and investigated in order to develop appropriate optimizations. In this connection, the Air Cargo Community Frankfurt is also banking on an even closer cooperation with the authorities. Successfully: thanks to the intensive exchange with customs and the resulting introduction of a digital process, the time needed for presentation to customs at the location was reduced by one-third from 45 to 30 minutes.

“The example of presentation to customs clearly shows what is possible when all concerned come together on the neutral platform of the association and jointly contribute their know-how”, says Andreas Heil, Board Member of the Air Cargo Community Frankfurt and Vice- President Customs & Compliance Solutions at Kewill. “Furthermore, we see it as clear proof that the digitalization in our industry still has enormous potential to save valuable time and money”.

The members of the Air Cargo Community Frankfurt are firmly convinced that a comprehensive solution for data exchange and for documentation on a digital basis, in other words, the creation of an integrated freight process right across all interfaces, will lead to high economic benefits for all concerned – for the airlines as well the handlers, the freight forwarders, other service providers at the location and the customers sending their freight. In the opinion of the association, the “Fair@Link” system at the location has the necessary potential.

As up to now there is no scientifically-based evidence on how high the economic benefits of such a system really is, the Community together with the Frankfurt University of Applied Sciences is to conduct a cost-benefit research project. The study will take a look at the complete value-added chain at the location and is intended to reveal facts which prove beyond doubt the benefits which are created.

Active Community creates important transparency

“For the airlines, freight transport is very important. The Frankfurt hub not only handles large volumes on freighters, but is also very important in the additional carriage of freight by passenger aircraft. Because given the great economic pressure in the industry, the additional loading of freight can improve the route results and thus help optimize profits”, says Michael Hoppe, Board Member of the Air Cargo Community Frankfurt and Chairman of the Board of Airline Representatives in Germany (BARIG). “The work of the Air Cargo Community Frankfurt makes a contribution in many areas. This clearly underlines that the association represents the perfect platform on which the various companies and organizations come together in order to jointly achieve a great deal.”

The commitment of the members is indeed high. 60 representatives of member companies are actively involved in the three working groups to date. The communication of all concerned also guarantees a maximum level of transparency in all areas – in the definition of joint objectives as well as in processes, developments and the implementation of projects by the Community.

“Transparency is the key to success”, adds Joachim von Winning, CEO of the Air Cargo Community Frankfurt. “It serves the purposes of quality assurance, because processes and procedures become understandable. It also ensures that projects and developments take place in the interest of all parties. And, last but not least, it represents the basis for mutual trust, especially towards the business partners.

Benchmarking with other airports

Another ambitious project of the Air Cargo Community Frankfurt will measure the performance capacity of the location in comparison with other airports. For this purpose, a completely new benchmarking process will be developed. The results should show, on the one hand, how quickly and efficiently Frankfurt operates in comparison with other major airports abroad. On the other hand, the association hopes to gain further insights as to where possible additional optimization opportunities exist.

Location with a high quality of service

The Frankfurt location should not only create an image for itself in terms of speed, according to the Air Cargo Community Frankfurt. It aims to establish itself generally the quality leader.

“In terms of reliability, Frankfurt already sets an example today”, says Christoph Schneider, Branch Manager of IJS Global, a member of the Air Cargo Community Frankfurt. “The quality of an air freight location is often reflected in how reliably the handling of difficult or special transports is handled. And it is precisely in this area where Frankfurt is ideally placed”.

With the introduction of consistently high quality standards, the Air Cargo Community Frankfurt wants to ensure that the excellent level at the location will be secured in the long term, and simultaneously signalizes to the business partners the reliability of the location.

Frankfurt is Europe’s leading pharmaceutical hub

A particular emphasis is placed on the complex area of pharmaceutical shipments, where Frankfurt is extremely well-positioned. In fact, the location is the leading pharmaceuticals hub in Europe. Temperature-controlled transport on the apron, the temperature-controlled, GDP-certified storage area of over 7,000 square metres and, last but not least, the complete documentation process, demonstrate the enormous strength of Frankfurt in this area. Yet, the Air Cargo Community Frankfurt is seeking the accelerate processes in the area too. It is aiming to achieve a reduction in the average length of stay of the shipments on the apron from the current 90 to between 45 and a maximum of 60 minutes. In order that the performance of the location with pharmaceutical shipments is verifiable, the Community is preparing a comprehensive certification of this area.

“With our work we are making a major contribution to ensuring that the location can gain additional market share in the freight business and, at the same time, the added value continues to rise”, emphasizes Dr. Karl-Rudolf Rupprecht, CEO of Air Cargo Community Frankfurt and Member of the Executive Board Operations at Lufthansa Cargo. “Below the line, we want to ensure that more air cargo is handled via Frankfurt, so that the annual volume of air cargo handling in Frankfurt grows from 2.2 million tons last year to a total of
3 million tons by 2020”.

Air Cargo Community Frankfurt e.V.

The Air Cargo Community Frankfurt e.V. is an association of companies, institutions and organizations with the clear objective of promoting the airfreight location of Frankfurt. Its total of 27 members include representatives of all areas of the air cargo supply chain. The association has three working groups’ Temperature-controlled Transport ‘,’ Processes & Infrastructure “and “Location Marketing & Community Building”, as well as various specialist groups which represent the entire range of services offered at the  airfreight location of Frankfurt. The prime objective is that the Frankfurt Airport will, also in future, continue to clearly be Europe’s No. 1 in the air freight business and, as the leading cargo hub, significantly enhance its competitiveness compared with other airports in neighboring countries. The location of Frankfurt, today with more than 2.2 million tons of air freight (2014) and 11,600 employees in the cargo area, should also continue to grow significantly in the coming years and, in doing so, capture an even larger share of global freight volumes for itself.


 Air Cargo Community Frankfurt e.V., Frankfurt Airport Center, Hugo-Eckener-Ring, HBK 15,
60549 Frankfurt am Main, Germany, t 0049(0)69 – 690 23511,,




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