Minster of State and Chairman of QFZA Inaugurates GWC Logistics Hub in Ras Bufontas Free Zone
H.E. Ahmad bin Mohammed Al Sayed, Minister of State and Chairman of QFZA, has inaugurated the newest regional hub for GWC (Q.P.S.C), the leading logistics provider and the Authorized Service Contractor of UPS in the State of Qatar. The inauguration took place during a ceremony held on Thursday, December 31, 2020, which was attended by various dignitaries and high-ranking officials from Qatar Free Zones Authority (QFZA) and the Company.
The hub strategically located in the Ras Bufontas Free Zone will represent the first logistics company to start operations out of the newly established free zone.
GWC is the first logistics company to start operations in the free zone, which is adjacent to the airport. This location will enhance the company’s capabilities and strengthen its role in expanding Qatar as a hub for transit, trade and value-added services.
H.E. Ahmad bin Mohammed Al Sayed, Minister of State and Chairman of QFZA said: “We welcome the establishment of the main regional hub of GWC and UPS Customer Center in Ras Bufontas Free Zone. This relationship represents the important role that QFZ plays in bolstering supply chains and strengthening Qatar’s position as a global hub for trade. The Free Zones have one of the region’s most advanced digital and logistical ecosystems and the infrastructure present here offers a platform that provides a globally competitive edge for our investors across its key sectors. We aim to attract companies like GWC and UPS that contribute to creating an attractive economic environment for investments, while providing all means to ensure the smooth-running of businesses.”
H.E. underlined the importance of the council of ministers decision to establish a customs department in Ras Bufontas and Umm Al-Houl Free Zones, which will facilitate the processing and transit of freight, and marks the start of large-scale operations.
“GWC is constantly investing and adapting to respond to the needs and changes of the market,” stated GWC Chairman Sheikh Abdulla bin Fahad bin Jassem bin Jabor Al Thani. “This milestone represents the first logistics company to operate out of Qatar Free Zones – we are demonstrating once again just what Qatar is capable of, and supporting local and international industry with their supply chain needs as they develop and expand their investments in the region.”
Among the services offered from the facility are freight, customs clearance, frozen/chilled/climatized storage, transportation, and the company’s advanced IT infrastructure. The hub was built to be GSAS1 certified, which means that through energy and water saving technology, as well as other features, the hub operates in a highly sustainable, environmentally friendly manner.
The hub also features two warehouses, one at 1,500 square meters, with the temperature controlled at 18 degrees Celsius and above, and the other 4,500 square meters, with four frozen storage chambers that can range from 0 to -25 degrees Celsius depending on requirements, as well as a bulk storage area. These warehouses will offer unmatched logistical and last mile delivery options to the aviation, pharmaceutical and events industries including FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022TM.
“Qatar’s effective response to the pandemic is expected to pay economic dividends in 2021,” said Rachid Fergati, UPS managing director for the Middle East and Indian subcontinent. “Through our relationship with GWC, UPS’s Authorized Service Contractor in Qatar, we are ready to deliver what matters for businesses looking to export and grow, with sustainable solutions and our smart global logistics network. We recognize GWC’s investment and national leadership in being the first to launch its logistics operations in the new Qatar Free zone.”
Located in the Ras Bufontas Free Zone, in close proximity to the Hamad International Airport, the new facility will help companies of all sizes focus on growing their business, while meeting their customers’ demands for speed, convenience and reliability. GWC invested in this facility with a sorting area of more than 1,200 square meters and a highly automated technology with a sorting capacity which can be further scaled up in response to demand. The facility will also help fine tune its express, freight and supply chain services to cater to the growing needs of Qatar’s economy, businesses and consumers.
The Qatar Free Zone Authority (QFZA) started its operations in 2019 to oversee and regulate the newly developing free zones, providing quality infrastructure, tax exemptions, and ownership facilities for international investment while also allowing local businesses to expand globally. The Zones are focused on attracting industry leading companies across its key sectors like emerging technologies and logistics, including companies that provide customs clearance and cold-chain storage. Cold chains allow for the safe transportation and distribution of temperature-sensitive freight.
“Two years of hard work, despite unprecedented challenges, has culminated in the development of this newest landmark in the logistics landscape of the region. Today’s inauguration enhances the offering to clients who have entrusted us with their vital logistics requirements,” stated GWC Group CEO Mr. Ranjeev Menon. “We greatly appreciate the support of the QFZA in establishing this hub – our teams collaborated very closely, going above and beyond when needed.”