Air India Air Transport Services Limited, abbreviated as AIASL, and Airports Authority of India Cargo Logistics and Allied Services Ltd., or AAICLAS, are the two ground handling agents authorised to function at the Chennai Airport and in charge of handling the export cargo flowing into the airport cargo complex. The cargo handling is done in a 30:70 ratio between both of them, respectively. However, recently, the sudden withdrawal of permission by the Bureau of Civil Aviation and Security for AIASL to accept palletised air cargo led to 100 tonnes of export cargo being withheld at the Chennai Airport.
“Air cargo agents are facing a halt in moving their export freight on airlines whose ground handling agent is AIASL,” said J. Krishnan of Natesa Iyer Logistics LLP. As a result, those utilising the services of Singapore Airlines, Malaysia Airlines, and Air India are stuck with no option to move their cargo. We understand BCAS issued a communication on December 31 withdrawing the permission to accept palletised air cargo for export as their regulated agent status is pending approval.”
Due to all this, amongst other categories of export cargo, those perishable exports to Southeast Asia are being badly affected, as Turkish Airlines, Thai Airlines, and Saudi Arabian Airlines all form a part of AIASL’s clientele.He also stated that, with Chennai already fighting a case over its market share of passengers and cargo with Bengaluru, this incident only adds to the city’s bad reputation.