Saudia launches ground handling and logistics arm

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A company has been launched to run the main cargo gate and ground handling and logistics services across all the airports in Saudi Arabia.

Saudi Arabian Logistics (SAL) is a new independent entity within the Saudia Group and is part of Vision 2030, an ambitious project to diversify the country’s economy and make it less reliant on oil.

The launch was announced at a ceremony in Riyadh, at which the Minister of Transport, Saleh Bin Nasser Al-Jasser, said that one of SAL’s goals is to invest in the Kingdom’s strategic location as the heart and the crossroads of key international trade routes between Asia, Europe and Africa and a distinctive logistical getaway between the East and the West and the rest of the world.

“The unprecedented comprehensive development projects being implemented require all government agencies and the private sector to join forces in order to execute similar projects that help develop logistical services and efficiency,” Al-Jasser said.

He added: “The government views the transportation sector as pivotal and works to develop it in order to provide the best transportation and integrated logistics services that keep up with the comprehensive development programs. SAL is one of the ambitious initiatives.”

Sami Sindi, the Saudia director-general, said SAL will improve the efficiency of logistics operations and ground handling services through integrating land and sea transportation operations and linking them with the Saudi airports.

“SAL will contribute directly to enhancing and developing the logistics infrastructure including all types of cargo platforms, warehouses and equipment as well as e-commerce cargo and shipping facilities,” Sindi said.

He said SAL will start its business activities later this month and create more economic and development opportunities through forging strategic partnerships with different local and global logistics service providers.

Omar Talal Hariri, the SAL CEO, said the company “will support the Kingdom’s vision towards transforming the country into a global logistics hub handling all types of cargo and shipping operations.”