IAG Cargo commits to supporting UNICEF to transport COVID-19 vaccines around the world

16/02/2021
  • IAG Cargo signs agreement with UNICEF to support its UNICEF Humanitarian Airfreight Initiative
  • The initiative will see IAG Cargo and other appointed airlines support the COVAX Facility, aimed at providing equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines
  • The Initiative will also act as a global logistics preparedness mechanism for other humanitarian and health crises over the longer term. 

IAG Cargo, the cargo division of International Airlines Group (IAG) today announced that it has signed an agreement with UNICEF to support the delivery of COVID-19 vaccines, essential medicines, medical devices and other critical supplies to respond to the pandemic.

IAG Cargo has committed its support to the UNICEF Humanitarian Airfreight Initiative that brings together airlines covering routes to over 100 countries, in support of the COVAX Facility – the global effort aimed at equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines.

 

IAG Cargo benefits from access to one of the largest aircraft fleets in the world supported by five airlines, including British Airways, Iberia and Aer Lingus. IAG Cargo has already successfully delivered over one million doses of the COVID-19 vaccines to many parts of the world, including the Canary Islands, the Balearic Islands, Ireland, the Americas and Melilla.

Fundamental to its success is IAG Cargo’s highly specialised Constant Climate offering, which sees the business safely and effectively transport millions of temperature sensitive pharmaceutical products every year. Constant Climate has three main hubs at London-Heathrow, Madrid-Barajas and Dublin Airport and an extensive global network of over 100 approved stations, supported by constant climate specialists.

John Cheetham, Chief Commercial Officer at IAG Cargo said: “We are incredibly proud to be able to support UNICEF in its work and to continue to play our part in this incredible global effort.

“We have many years’ experience flying vaccines and bio-science products around the world, delivering them safely to where they need to be. We’ve already transported over one million doses of the COVID-19 vaccines across the world, alongside transporting medical equipment, other types of vaccines, COVID-19 testing kits and PPE, as well as continuing to transport everyday products the world needs. Our hub facilities are world-class, and our global team of Constant Climate professionals are specialists in their field and have been preparing for this operation for some time.”

IAG Cargo’s London Heathrow hub remains the only airside facility to be GDP certified and WDA licensed by the UK’s Medicines & Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA). In Madrid, Constant Climate shipments benefit from a brand-new pharmaceutical centre (GDP certified) dedicated to processing temperature-sensitive pharmaceutical products.

The UNICEF Humanitarian Airfreight Initiative will also act as a global logistics preparedness mechanism for other humanitarian and health crises over the longer term.  Based on the COVAX Facility’s indicative distribution and first round allocation plan, 145 countries will receive doses starting in the first half of 2021 to immunize around three per cent of their population, on average, subject to all requirements being met and final allocation plans.

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