FIATA e-Flash No. 205 – 29 July 2019


As the game changes, FIATA pledges to step up to lead forwarders into a new age

FIATA is willing to embrace the “new world order” and consider taking a leading position in uniting the fragmented forwarding industry in the face of competitive threats. Last week, ex-DSV executive Steve Walker called on the forwarding association to “become a safe haven for forwarders to discuss a wider new industry strategy”, in the face of vertical consolidation by shipping lines, and the attempt to control data via platforms such as TradeLens.

Acting Director General Steve Morris told The Loadstar he was broadly in agreement with Mr Walker. “FIATA is fit for purpose in terms of deliverables for all its members. But there is clearly a new world order coming up, an IT revolution.

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The traditional freight forwarding model has transformed into the impelling world of logistics supply chain fulfilment. This business requires young people for the future. The FIATA World Congress is the ideal forum to experience first-hand the opportunities that exist for millennials and the younger generation. For anyone starting out in this industry: coming to the Congress is a must. And for those futureproofing their business: sending your younger staff is a must.

Those 35 years and younger save nearly 30% on registration fees with special Young Participant rates:

For more information on the Congress see the website: or email info(at)

SLFFA’s new Chairman Roshan shows way forward for freight, logistics industry

Newly elected Chairman of Sri Lanka Freight Forwarders Association Roshan Silva recently at the Annual General Meeting recapped some of the salient achievements of the Association as well as the industry and highlighted current and future challenges and how the industry could address those. Following are excerpts from his speech.

Before we aspire to the future, I would like to honour our past because it has brought us to where we are today. SLFFA was established in 1981 with the objective of bringing all Freight Forwarders under one umbrella and with a view to standardise the trade. Today Government and government agencies have recognised the SLFFA as the Apex body.

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The Border Patrol Hits a Breaking Point

Vice President Mike Pence’s Friday visit to a Border Patrol detention facility in Texas didn’t go according to plan. Meant to pressure Democrats to address the migrant crisis at the southern border, the visit instead appeared to horrify those who accompanied Pence and raised pointed questions about U.S. Customs and Border Protection, America’s most troubled law enforcement agency.

Nearly 400 migrants were crammed into a converted vehicle sally port; many hadn’t showered in weeks, and space was so tight there was no room for cots for them to sleep. “The stench was horrendous,” the Washington Post’s Josh Dawsey wrote, noting that Border Patrol agents were wearing face masks and saying, “Pence appeared to scrunch his nose when entering the facility, stayed for a moment and left.”

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Opposition to EU-Mercosur trade deal sees logistics plans stay on drawing boards

The European Union and the Mercosur trade pact have come a long way: after 20 years of talks, the two sides have finally agreed to phase out tariffs on most goods over the next 10 years.

The trade agreement was announced on June 28, the culmination of negotiations that stretched back as far as the days of the dot-com boom. It opens the door for many exporters on both sides of the Atlantic, from produce and protein shippers in South America to producers of French cheese and car parts in Europe.

FIATA in supports the role governments in dealing with cutting red tape and creating facilitation opportunities, enhancing harmonisation, implementing international agreements, and maintaining infrastructure. With these elements logistics becomes a powerful enabler of prosperity and the precious ally of good government in creating happier and more successful citizens which is outlined our position paper.

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‘No-deal’ threat drives logistics players into a gamble with warehouse leases

Logistics companies face a gamble with long-term leases if they are to cope with the impact of a no-deal Brexit on UK supply chains, despite a supposedly improving warehouse market.  Chief executive of the UK Warehousing Association (UKWA) Peter Ward told The Loadstar reports were painting a rosier picture, but this ignores the needs of the logistics community.

“Messages are being bandied around that there are greater levels of warehouse space available, with more being spent on speculative development,” he said.  “But it’s important to de-couple the growth in empty buildings, with what will be needed to handle the fallout from a no-deal Brexit.”

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DP World to create US$1.2bn container port and logistics park in Indonesia

DP World and Indonesian conglomerate Maspion Group have agreed to create a US$1.2bn container port and industrial logistics park in East Java. It is the first joint venture of its kind in the Indonesian transportation sector involving a private sector partnership between an FDI partner and a private sector Indonesian company, within the context of co-operation in maritime services with the state-owned maritime services operator Pelindo III.

Two term sheet agreements aim to create a modern, integrated container terminal and industrial logistics park, expected to play a vital role as a trade gateway for Eastern Java. It includes cooperation in setting up Maspion International Container Port in Gresik, East Java, with an investment of US$ 1.2bn and 3m teu of capacity using electric power in its operations to help cut carbon emissions.

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Indian Govt Aims to Check Logistic Costs to 9% of GDP

In his address to stakeholders of the shipping industry, Minister of Shipping Mansukh Mandaviya said the Centre plans to bring down logistics cost down from 14 percent of the GDP to 9 percent.

The Minister was speaking at FICCI’s summit on Fueling the Maritime Sector: IMO 2020 and Beyond. He said that he would represent India and its interests at the next meet of International Maritime Organisation (IMO).

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Key benefits of asset tracking systems for maritime shippers

There are multiple benefits of tracking sea-freight containers in real-time. In a sector as large as the shipping industry, where cargo theft and misplaced containers are all too common, it is essential for companies to keep track of their shipments.

The latest developments in GPS technology allow the production of cost-efficient and low-energy consumption asset tracking devices. These devices can be easily attached to containers or other portable assets to monitor their location and condition, ultimately reducing the costs associated with cargo loss.

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Eastern Air Logistics to expand China Cargo Airlines fleet

Eastern Air Logistics, the cargo wing of state-owned China Eastern Airlines (MU, Shanghai Hongqiao), has filed a draft report for an Initial Public Offering (IPO) in which it plots an expansion of the fleet of its subsidiary China Cargo Airlines. The IPO is the final step in a two-year restructuring to diversify the company’s ownership.

The prospectus said that despite the risks associated with the current trade tensions with the United States, the positive prospects of a rapidly growing market meant it could renew the leases on all of its six B777-Fs for an additional six years when their leases expire. It also foresees the expansion of the fleet with further 777-Fs, although the number of these or a date are not specified.

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AirAsia enters logistics JV for Thai business

AirAsia said in a filing with the stock exchange that a memorandum of understanding was signed between the four parties, whereby Teleport and Triple i would establish a partnership in Thailand as a general cargo sales agent for the airlines.

According to the statement, Teleport is a cargo and logistics services provider while Triple i is a total logistics integrator with 27 years of experience in the international forwarding and logistics industry


Digital aviation freight services to exceed $1.7 billion in revenue by 2024

Near-term expectations are mixed for the transportation industry in 2019, said global tech market advisory firm ABI Research, in its Air Freight Transportation Technology Trends application analysis report.

Escalating trade wars, industry consolidation, over capacity, and rising consumer expectations are adding tremendous pressure to both freight forwarders and air freight services. These forces are driving air freight technology services adoption to rise by a 17 percent CAGR, with connection revenues alone rising by 25 percent from 2018 to 2024, according to the report.

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Sennder raises $70 million amid road freight tech boom

Sennder, a platform and marketplace that connects commercial shippers with smaller freight carriers, has raised $70 million in a series C round of funding led by Lakestar, with participation from Accel, HV Holtzbrinck Ventures, Project A, Siemens’ Next47, H14, and Scania Growth Capital.

Founded out of Berlin in 2016, Sennder touts itself as a “digital road freight forwarder,” with a platform that sets out to modernize and automate an industry that has traditionally relied on paper, phone calls, and faxes. The platform constitutes various tools, including a mobile app that lets drivers view and accept loads, fleet management tools for trucking companies, and logistics management smarts for the shippers.

FIATA encourages the introduction of technology into the freight forwarding industry as such tools and innovative processes will help improve efficiency in our sector ensuring that we continue to provide the value-added services for which our members have done so for decades. 

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Dutch to cut freight access charges

The Dutch government has agreed a subsidy package to reduce access charges for freight operators and encourage a shift in road freight to rail in return for operators investing in more efficient port logistics and measures to reduce the environmental impact of operating freight trains.

The rail freight access subsidy scheme was approved by the European Commission (EC) on July 8 following a review of state aid rules and will be introduced retroactively from January 1 2019.

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China to lift restrictions dangerous goods by rail

The rail transport of dangerous goods between China and Europe will be permitted before the end of this year. The Chinese government is currently reconsidering the restrictions on this type of cargo, with the aim of enabling export as well as import of products that contain dangerous substances. This was confirmed by two trustworthy carriers on the New Silk Road.

“The rail transport of dangerous goods will be possible to and from China by Q4 of this year”, said Rien Gulden of DB Schenker, a carrier with at least eight years of experience on the New Silk Road. The same was said by Wanxu Dong, General Manager of BTE, another rail carrier between the continents. “The restrictions are currently reconsidered, and most probably it will be made possible to shift dangerous goods by rail this same year”, he said at the RailFreight Summit in Gdansk this May.

FIATA has long been supported of dangerous goods training and awareness. In 2012, we launched an ICAO FIATA DG by Air Training Program helping to build capacity and knowledge among our members. We have training centers in Canada, Latin America, Africa and Asia that provide ICAO and IATA Accredited training to local members. We support the safe transport of dangerous goods not only in air freight but in all modes as our members are commonly engaged in multimodal transport.

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EBay to Launch Shipping, Logistics Service for Big Sellers

Online marketplace eBay Inc. is rolling out a fulfillment service aimed at helping its high-volume sellers ship orders to customers faster and more cheaply. The service, a new step in the growing competition over shipping of online orders, will rely on a network of third-party logistics providers using an eBay technology platform to store, pack and ship inventory from “strategically located warehouses across the country,” the company said Wednesday.

Launching next year, the offering comes as more e-commerce companies are extending into physical distribution operations as retailers and online brands competing Inc.’s fulfillment network look to slash distribution costs and position their products closer to customers.

FIATA took early steps to engage with its members on eCommerce practices, highlighting that logistics will need to meet the growing demands of eTraders, meanwhile eCommerce will need to rely on logistics to ensure product fulfilment. This relationship will see the face of logistics evolve rapidly.

For more details, please visit: logistics arm raises $218m investment fund’s logistics division has bagged $218m in investment for logistics-related companies and technology. As Alibaba’s closest competitor in China, has a lot of work to do. JD Logistics became a standalone subsidiary in 2017, and Tech Crunch claims it may be eyeing a public offering in the near future with a valuation around the $13.5bn mark.

In 2016, Alibaba’s logistics division, Cainiao, scooped its own investment but had a valuation a little over half of JD Logistics at $7.7bn. As for what the money is to be spent on, that appears to be under wraps at the moment, although this report suggests drone deliveries, logistics automation and smart vehicles may be potential avenues of spending.

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Alibaba will let American companies sell on its site

Alibaba said Tuesday it is opening up the platform, allowing American companies to sell their products to small- and mid-sized business buyers around the world. That will help Alibaba (BABA) better compete with Amazon (AMZN) and Shopify (SHOP), which already have a thriving marketplace for large companies to sell to business customers across the globe.

Previously, American businesses could buy only on the platform. Now they can sell to other businesses in the United States, China and elsewhere.

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Essential ‘will democratise the freight forwarding industry’, claims Kontainers

Smaller freight forwarders looking to digitise their operations and provide an online customer-facing service received a new option today as freight software-as-a-service (SaaS) provider Kontainers unveiled its new platform.

Kontainers Essential is designed to allow small forwarders to set up a website with advanced quotation functionality “in the space of a few minutes”, effectively allowing them to compete with the new breed of digital-first forwarders.

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