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DHL has expanded its international products and services portfolio, with inauguration of a premium time-definite product for inbound shipments. DHL Import Express 12:00 ensures inbound delivery by noon, for shipments from major cities, towns and business centers, with transportation charges paid by the receiver. Initially available from major centers in Europe and Asia to the Middle East, the new service will be rolled out globally throughout the year. It offers a full money-back guarantee in the event of late delivery. In addition to Import Express 12:00 and DHL Import Express Worldwide (for delivery generally by 6:00 p.m.), DHL Express plans to extend its Import Express product to include pre-9:00 a.m. delivery in selected markets. In another company announcement, DHL has launched a DHL Fashion and Apparel Center of Excellence, to be based largely in Tiripur, Tamil Nadu, India. The venture is intended to facilitate apparel trade within Southeast Asia, Europe and North America. The center will be staffed by a core team of industry experts, and be responsible for developing tailored products and consultancy services to customers. Finally, another corporate unit, DHL Global Forwarding, has initiated trial shipments of its own 45-containers, from its less-than-containerload gateway in Hong Kong to major European gateways on a round-trip basis. Customers will be able to track their shipments via the internet as they travel westbound to Germany and the Netherlands. More countries will subsequently be added to the program, DHL said. The trial entails the tagging of containers with GPS devices from Savi Networks. "Live" data of cargo status is available through a Web-based monitoring system, allowing customers to track the security status of their shipments in real time, and view routes through automatically generated maps. Sensors also report on environmental conditions inside the container.
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