Intra-regional trade and the demand for logistics services in sub-Saharan Africa have increased exponentially in recent years on the back of increased economic growth on the continent, estimated to have rebounded to 2.4% in 2017, after slowing to 1.3% in 2016, this is according to DHL group.
The company said, South Africa is one of the region’s largest economies, and contributed towards the increase in economic activity substantially.
“Evidence of this is the 3.1% uptick in South African GDP growth during the fourth quarter of 2017,” said Hennie Heymans, CEO, DHL.
As part of its efforts to promote intra-regional trade and continued commitment to further boost the economy, DHL Express has expanded the fleet servicing the two of South Africa’s top African trade partners – Zambia and Zimbabwe – which contributed 2,6% and 2,4% of South Africa’s total exports in 2017 respectively.
DHL Express is adding an additional Boeing 737 to the fleet servicing the trade lanes, increasing the amount of cargo transported between Johannesburg, Harare and Lusaka.
The new aircraft has a payload of up to 21 tons, over the planned route which is over 200% higher than the effective capacity of the ATR-72 aircraft previously operating on this route for DHL.
Heymans said that a more effective logistics supply chain on the continent is a positive asset to the growth of the economy in the region as it provides a solution to easy and accessible trade across Sub-Saharan Africa.