Indian logistic industry: current scenario and future outlook
By Sumit Sharma
Logistics is regarded as the backbone of the economy, providing efficient and cost effective flow of goods on which other commercial sectors depend. Logistic industry in India is evolving rapidly, it is the interplay of infrastructure, technology and new types of service providers, which defines whether the logistic industry is able to help its customers reduce their costs in logistic sector and provide effective services.
Despite of the weak economic sentiments, the logistics industry continues to witness growth due to the growth in retail, e-commerce and manufacturing sectors. The Global Logistics sector was expected to grow 10-15% in the period 2013-14. Logistics industry is expected to reach over USD 2 billion by 2019. Rise of e-commerce logistics and increased domestic consumption will lead the way for the industry in the coming years. With a promise of growth and improvements, the service oriented logistics industry is ready to expand beyond the horizons in the latter half of this decade.
The recent Indian logistics sector comprises of inbound and outbound segments of the manufacturing and service supply chains. Of late, the logistics infrastructure has gained a lot of attention both from business industry as well as policy makers. The role of managing this infrastructure, to effectively compete has been slightly under-emphasized. Inadequate logistics infrastructure has an effect of creating bottlenecks in the growth of an economy. The logistics management regimen has the capability of overcoming the disadvantages of the infrastructure in the short run while providing cutting edge competitiveness in the long term. There exist several challenges and opportunities for logistic sector in the Indian economy.
Challenges faced by the recent logistic industry in India
The most essential challenge faced by the industry today is insufficient integration of transport networks, information technology and warehousing & distribution facilities. Regulations exist at a number of different tiers, is imposed by national, regional and local authorities. However, the regulations differ from city to city, hindering the creation of national networks.
Trained Manpower is essential both for the third party logistics sector as well as the manufacturing and retailing sectors, which is very weak at a practical level, i.e., IT, driving and warehouse as well as at a higher strategic level. The disorganized nature of the logistics sector in India, its perception as a manpower-heavy industry and lack of adequate training institutions has led to a shortfall in skilled management and client service personnel. There is a lack of IT standard, equipment and poor systems integration.
Poor facilities and management are the reason for high levels of loss, damage and deterioration of stock, mainly in the perishables sector. Part of the problem is insufficient specialist equipment, i.e. proper refrigerated storage and containers, but it is also partly down to lack of training. The practitioners and the academicians are now aware of the importance of logistics and supply chain; however the field is still under penetrated as far as research is concerned. It is essential to prioritize research and development so that the weaknesses in the industry can be taken care of and improved. Click on next page to continue read article…
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