Member Interview: Said Gharib of Express Al Arabia, Egypt
19th August 2016
UFO member in Egypt since 2000, Express Al Arabia were established in 1992 and are IATA, TIACA, FIATA and EIFFA members. This month, we will be interviewing Managing Director of Express Al Arabia, Said Gharib (pictured right).
How did you first get into the freight industry?
At the start of my career, I worked as an engineer in civil construction, bridges, roadworks and also architects. Through this job, I worked inside Cairo airport and had the chance to work with some colleagues who worked in air freight offices.
I enjoyed this type of work and in this sector, so when offered a position I took it - being more satisfied with working in an office, instead of working at sites, usually under the sun for long periods. I discovered my abilities in, and preference for, office work through longer hours and greater concentration; thriving inside more than I do when working outside.
Please describe your most memorable shipment to date?
We were working on a project to help the customs department with a general mandate for customs, on all shipments. Also, our company has worked to rid detected radiation and the transfer of special interests and equipment for all customs ports throughout the Arab Republic of Egypt. Our company was also authorised by Egyptian customs to clear shipments and offer all the facilities to the American company AS&E (American Science and Engineering) - as per the turnkey contract, we worked together at all stages of importing, shipping, clearance and instalments.
What motivates you most in your work?
A great advantage in this kind of work is that you feel like you're exploring the world, but from your own office.
What is your most embarrassing professional moment?
When there is a sensitive shipment in terms of time and there will be an unforeseen delay, which we cannot fix. Especially when you know that the carrier lines will refuse to give documented reasons for the delay.
What are the current trends that you see in transportation as far as Egypt is concerned? What is its untapped potential?
Egypt has a lot of possibilities. I hope that the government focuses on the Suez Canal area. If developed, it could become a transit point at the heart of the world.
What do you enjoy to do in your spare time?
I like to play water ball and swim with my grandchildren.
Finally, where would you like to see your company in the next 3-5 years?
I hope that our country can overcome its recent sensitive struggles and I, along with our staff and families, can take our company forward responsibly, whilst maintaining the high levels of service to our customers and good relationships with our agents.