In a bid to empower Non-Government Organisations (NGOs) to use its freight facilities to distribute essential items free of cost amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Qatar Airways has launched a ‘We Qare-1Million Kilo’ initiative, aimed at furthering the United Nation’s sustainable development goals.
Speaking about the initiative launched in mid-July, the airways’ Chief Officer of Cargo Guillaume Halleux said NGOs will not have to pay anything to distribute medical supplies and humanitarian assistance between July and December this year.
“With ‘We Qare’, Qatar Airways Cargo hopes to create a sense
of fulfilment within our industry – whether by supporting charities, reducing
our carbon footprint, fighting to protect wildlife, or promoting equality, diversity,
young people and culture,” Halleux said in an interview with Air Cargo News.
He said Qatar Airways, the world’s largest international freight carrier, according to International Air Transport Association (IATA) statistics, wants to set an example, both from a business viewpoint and in terms of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and added that the initiative allow it to play a part in building tomorrow’s world.
“We want to play an active and leading role in moving
mindsets forward within our industry for the sake of its future,” said Halleux
and added that an industry made up of committed stakeholders who care about the
impact of their actions and who work to achieve sustainable economic
development is vital.
He further said while the next phase of the project is still
being formed, Qatar Airways hopes that it will encourage the industry to be
more responsible for the adverse effect air freight has on the environment.
Halleux said amid the COVID-19 pandemic, much of the
humanitarian assistance would be passive pharmaceuticals and medical supplies
but could also contain food products or other necessary things and that these
products will be transported to any place in the world, as long as the network
of the carrier permits.
“To ensure our business activity is inclusive and can continue in the long term, we need to put sustainability at the heart of the air freight sector’s concerns. Currently, there is nothing in our industry to unite us around the issue of sustainability,” Halleux rued.
By Nawal Mukadam