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Tue 5 Feb 2008 04:00 AM

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Interest mounts in Jordan transport infrastructure

Jordan's bid to become a regional and global transit hub was given a significant boost following considerable interest from logistics giant Agility.

The Kuwait-based company has recently established a new warehouse in the Queen Alia International Airport Free Zone.

The 1000m2 facility is capable of handling up to 600 pallet positions and will be able to link up with Agility's larger Aqaba-based warehouse through use of WMS technology.

"Agility has distinguished itself in Jordan and the wider Middle East as a company that consistently provides comprehensive, innovative and reliable logistics solutions," said Elias Monem, CEO, Middle East and Africa, Agility.

"This new facility opens up an entirely new avenue of trade to companies who want to reach global consumers while keeping their overheads low," he added.

The latest warehouse is part of Agility's broader plans to expand its logistics operations across Jordan.

The logistics provider is currently involved in a number of large scale projects across the Kingdom, including Aqaba Logistics Village and the Aqaba cargo terminal at King Hussein International Airport.

Last October, Agility revealed its ambitions to capitalise on Jordan's thriving oil and gas industry.

Developing a portfolio of specialised services to cater for the energy sector, such as warehouse management, project forwarding, heavy lifting, liquid bulk transportation, marine services and vendor invoice auditing, the company has since invested heavily into developing its infrastructure across the Kingdom.

"The warehouse at Queen Alia International Airport is part of our overall vision for Jordan, which is to introduce innovative and reliable supply chain solutions, and therefore contribute to the overall economy," said Monem.

"Backed by the knowledge and expertise of our global operation, we are confident that our presence in Jordan will be a long and fruitful one," he added.

For Jordan, Agility's interest is a timely push during a period of fierce transportation infrastructure development. Last November, Air Cargo Middle East & India reported on the Aqaba Development Corporation's agreement with Changi Airports International to develop a master plan of King Hussein International Airport.

Expected to help meet predicted demand for cargo and passenger traffic to the region, the project includes the Aqaba Special Economic Zone (ASEZ). Established in 2001 as a major economic initiative, the area is expected to attract US$12 billion of investment and create 70,000 jobs.

"Because of such developments and collaborations, Jordan's airfreight market could be transformed in a fashion quite unlike the situation in Dubai and its city planners. More cargo could flow between West Asia and the Far East, which has already grown considerably so far," said Philbert Suresh, founder, GUST Logistics forum.

"It is possible that the cargo growth will come from untapped demand in the northern region of Aqaba," he added.

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