Entrusted with expert handling of sensitive cargo for defence gathering

Pretoria, South Africa - GAC Laser Specialised Logistics pulled out all the stops to ensure smooth handling of dangerous goods and other defence-related cargo for the Africa Aerospace & Defence Exhibition (AAD) 2018. It was the fourth consecutive time that the company was entrusted with the sensitive cargoes as the official on-site freight contractor and sole freight agent of the bi-annual exhibition.

Held at the Waterkloof Airforce Base in Tshwane, Pretoria, AAD is Africa’s only aerospace and defence expo that combines a trade exhibition and an air show to demonstrate the latest defence technologies and solutions over land, sea and air.

Paramount’s FLASH helicopter on display at the AAD2018 expo.
Paramount’s FLASH helicopter on display at the AAD2018 expo.
Getting everything to the site on time was a complex operation due to the sensitive and potentially dangerous nature of some of the cargo. Compliance with all international and local regulations was a must, including those of the South African Revenue Services (SARS), National Conventional Arms Control Committee (NCACC), Chief Inspectorate of Explosives (CIE), Defence Intelligence (DI), ICASA and Border Management Agency (BMA).

Shipments were brought to the site from around the world in more than 20 containers, including 30 tons of air freight. After completing customs clearance – including special inspections and procedures where required – the GAC team booked the containers into the base warehouse and set about unloading and safely transporting the defence materials to the stands. Exhibitors were also given assistance with equipment and manpower, and collection of goods from stands. And when the exhibition was over, GAC handled the return of cargo to its country of origin or to other events elsewhere.

“Managing and overseeing such a large and complex project is our speciality,” says Nico Troostheide, GAC Laser Specialised Logistics Managing Executive. “Our team of experts successfully handled over 70 permit applications for the import, clearance and delivery coming from varying countries throughout Africa and at least 60 countries globally.”

GAC Laser Specialised Logistics also handled the delivery of a M345 Jet Trainer aircraft and a fully equipped AS550 FLASH helicopter to the venue for the Paramount Group.

For this year’s AAD, GAC Laser was a major contributor to the Youth Development Programme in partnership with Paramount Group. As such they were entrusted with the delivery of drones, mazes, a life-size robot and a university-built vehicle used to raise awareness among young people of the importance of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) for career development.

Sharon Trengove, Paramount’s Events Manager/Head of Incoming Delegations, says: “The patience and assistance of the logistics team during the busy period of this exhibition is testament to their experience and commitment to provide a service that exceeded all our expectations from start to finish.”

GAC Laser Specialised Logistics is a division of GAC Laser International Logistics which covers all major ports and terminals from its head office in Cape Town and branches in Durban, Port Elizabeth and Johannesburg.