The Covishield vaccine, manufactured by the Serum Institute of India, departed from CSMIA carrying two million doses to Brazil via Emirates Sky Cargo and two million doses to Morocco on Royal Air Maroc. (HT PHOTO)
The Covishield vaccine, manufactured by the Serum Institute of India, departed from CSMIA carrying two million doses to Brazil via Emirates Sky Cargo and two million doses to Morocco on Royal Air Maroc. (HT PHOTO)

Covid-19: Mumbai airport exports Covishield vaccines to international destinations

Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport (CSMIA) on Friday became the first airport in the country to export the vaccine to international destinations
By Neha LM Tripathi, Mumbai
PUBLISHED ON JAN 23, 2021 12:00 AM IST

Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport (CSMIA) on Friday became the first airport in the country to export the vaccine to international destinations. CSMIA has initiated the international shipment of Covishield vaccine to Brazil and Morocco.

The Covishield vaccine, manufactured by the Serum Institute of India, departed from CSMIA carrying two million doses to Brazil via Emirates Sky Cargo and two million doses to Morocco on Royal Air Maroc.

Overall, CSMIA has facilitated the movement of over 14.17 million doses of the Covishield vaccine across various international and domestic destinations. As a premier pharma hub of the country, CSMIA has placed a process for faster turnaround of Covid-19 vaccine export-import (EXIM) and transhipment movements.

“Given the requirement for timely and temperature-controlled movement of the vaccine, the existing infrastructure at CSMIA enables the airport to offer a continuous temperature-controlled movement and seamless processing of pharma goods through the airport. The standard operating procedures (SOPs) implemented by the airport in anticipation of the vaccine distribution saw the terminal register a cargo processing time of just 23 minutes, right from goods acceptance to dispatch at the ramp,” said the airport spokesperson.

CSMIA handles the largest portion of EXIM pharmaceutical air cargo movements in the country. The airport has handled 40 to 50 tons of vaccines per day and is home to Asia’s largest temperature-controlled export pharma excellence centre, a facility that has a one-time holding capacity of 800 tons for 2-8 degrees. It can cater to cargo meant for seven freighters at a time, as well as a Pharma-dedicated import cold zone offering 860 tons of 15 to 25 degrees storage and cold chambers offering 300 tons of 2 to 8 degrees storage.

CSMIA is also India’s largest hub for ‘Envirotainer’ movements with over 60 power outlets for processing pharma active containers; CSMIA’s “Envirotainer Station” has processed over 2500 active containers within the airport and distribution to major pharma gateway airports across the country.

Currently CSMIA witnesses around 14 to 15 cargo flights daily and handles an average of 800 tons of export and 700 tons of import cargo in a day. CSMIA caters to over 500 destinations, with 27% of its overall exports to Europe, 20% to America and 20% to African countries. The airport offers direct cargo connectivity to destinations such as Europe, America, Middle East, Africa, Japan, China, Hongkong and Singapore, and 60 domestic cities.

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