Abu Dhabi companies set up air corridor to diversify food trade and investment

Etihad Cargo, Abu Dhabi Airports and Kezad's food hub sign initial pact to position the UAE in the global food supply chain

Etihad Cargo, Abu Dhabi Airports and Abu Dhabi Food Hub signed an agreement to develop new food corridors. Photo: Etihad Cargo
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Three Abu Dhabi logistics companies have agreed to develop an air corridor to diversify trading and investments in food, as the UAE prioritises initiatives that drive its food security strategy.

Etihad Airways' cargo arm Etihad Cargo, Abu Dhabi Airports and the Kezad-based food wholesale market Abu Dhabi Food Hub signed an initial agreement to set up the origin-to-destination Fresh Corridor 2.0, aimed at positioning the UAE as a key player in the food supply chain.

The initiative will help to diversify food sources, develop new trade corridors and improve the choice of products available for regional consumers, the companies said in a joint statement on Tuesday.

“The launch of the Fresh Corridor 2.0 will encourage two-way food trade between the UAE and the rest of the world, bringing food products into the UAE but also taking our Made in the UAE products to the world in a … step towards diversification and growth of imports and exports,” Elena Sorlini, managing director and interim chief executive of Abu Dhabi Airports, said.

The UAE aims to increase the contribution of food and agriculture to its economy by $10 billion and create 20,000 jobs in the next five years amid measures to improve the country's food security, Abdulla bin Touq, Minister of Economy, said in September.

The country is diversifying its economy away from oil and is supporting the growth of other industries such as food and agriculture.

The National Food Security Strategy 2051 aims to put the UAE at the top of the Global Food Security Index by 2051.

It sets out plans to develop a comprehensive national system based on enabling sustainable food production by using modern technology, while enhancing local production.

A look inside Cop28's bustling farm, growing fresh produce

A look inside Cop28's bustling farm, growing fresh produce

The three companies said on Tuesday they aim to build a corridor for food trading that includes advanced infrastructure, access to regional consumer markets and reliable logistics.

“This collaboration will indeed enhance our multi-modal capabilities as we seek to position the UAE as a leader in the regional food value chain,” Suresh Vaidhyanathan, chief executive of Abu Dhabi Food Hub, said.

The partnership will address the “evolving demands” of food trade by liaising with government stakeholders, relevant facilitators and key contributors from the food sector to ensure seamless trade, according to the statement.

“Etihad Cargo customers will benefit from the expanded infrastructure as a strategic hub in the Middle East to the rest of the world,” Antonoaldo Neves, chief executive of Etihad Airways, said.

Updated: January 23, 2024, 10:58 AM