Supporting a collaborative approach

posted on 17th March 2022
Supporting a collaborative approach

The air cargo industry is beginning to see the benefits of community collaboration, and Changi Airport plans to introduce further community-based applications to unlock efficiency and productivity gains, and enhance supply chain visibility, says Lim Ching Kiat, managing director for Airhub Development

The Covid-19 pandemic has demonstrated the fragility of the air cargo industry and underscored the importance of digitisation and data-sharing across the air cargo value chain. There will be stronger pressure on air cargo communities to accelerate the industry’s digitisation efforts and to share data in order to enhance supply chain visibility and efficiency, thereby building resilience.
We strongly believe in a collaborative approach. Changi Airport introduced a community data-sharing platform – the Changi Air Cargo Community System (ACCS) – an open ecosystem of collaborative and community-based applications underpinned by an information-sharing platform that aggregates data from all parties involved in the cargo handling process. It optimises operational efficiencies and enables end-to-end digitisation of the air cargo supply chain. This initiative is aligned with Singapore’s ambition to become a leading global logistics hub, and a vibrant, smart and quality air hub, supported by operational excellence and innovation.

New use cases for the ACCS
Among the first few use cases of the Changi ACCS is the Truck Dock Slot Booking (TDSB) application, to even out cargo lodgement and collection at our cargo handlers’ airfreight terminals in a safe and secure manner, thereby reducing waiting time, optimising resources and providing greater insights to airport landside activities. This will provide greater predictability for forwarders, trucking companies and cargo handlers during this volatile period.
In 2022, efforts on digital transformation through community collaboration will remain a key priority for Changi Airport. We plan to introduce other community-based applications to further unlock efficiency and productivity gains, as well as enhance supply chain visibility. Building cargo communities and aligning them to a common vision is no easy feat. It is important that stakeholders share this vision within each organisation to transit from legacy processes and relationships and move towards building trust and delivering value. The air cargo industry is beginning to see the benefits of community collaboration in this increasingly dynamic business environment.

Expectations for 2022
Global air cargo capacity is expected to remain tight in the year ahead due to continued supply chain disruptions and slow recovery of international travel. On the demand side, we expect air cargo demand to remain fairly strong in 2022. Based on World Trade Organisation (WTO)’s forecast, world merchandise trade volume is projected to grow by 4.7% year-on-year. In particular, air cargo demand for key cargo verticals such as e-commerce, semiconductors and pharmaceuticals will remain strong.
The recent Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) involving 15 Asia-Pacific countries including Singapore, entered into force on 1 January 2022. RCEP is the world’s largest free trade agreement and is expected to provide a boost to intra-Asia trades and supply chain flows, as well as strengthen Asia as a global manufacturing hub.
Environment sustainability has also become an increasing topic of focus among the global air cargo industry. There will be greater attention placed on minimising carbon footprint across the supply chain. One key area is the development of Sustainable Aviation Fuels (SAF). CAG is partnering the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore and Singapore Airlines for the SAF trial which will commence in 2022. We also look forward to working closely with additional airline partners to accelerate the use of SAF at Changi Airport. On ground, the TDSB application also supports the community’s overall environmental sustainability efforts to reduce carbon emissions by cutting down on truck waiting time at the airfreight terminals.
Changi Airport continues to work closely with our stakeholders to examine how the air cargo industry will take shape in the coming years and examine how our existing and future digital and physical infrastructure can boost our air cargo hub resilience.