From the Magazine: Logistics Foresight 2023

The logistics and supply chain industry has always been evolving with time, and as we enter the year 2023, amid the challenges posed by the economy and ongoing geopolitical issues, managing logistics and supply chain operations is not going to be easy. Thus, new trends, strategies, and innovations will follow. To see how the Logistics and supply chain industry will evolve in 2023 we reached out to industry experts to gain perspective and try to measure the growth prospects of the industry across sectors.

The logistics and supply chain industry, after a multi-year stint of dealing with the pandemic’s aftermath, entered the year 2022 with high hopes. But, it was not so late that warehouse bottlenecks, vehicle backups at inland hubs, dock worker contract negotiations, and rising costs, etc. presented themselves in front of the logistics managers as new roadblocks.

Though supply chain conditions are expected to improve in the coming year, operational disruptions are set to stay – whether they are existing or new geopolitical conflicts, inflationary pressures, recessionary environment, climate change events, or other issues yet to emerge. All of this can impact the flow of goods, create port holdups, reduce container and ocean freight availability, and surge prices, among other concerns.

Amid these disruptions, the global logistic & supply chain systems market size was estimated at USD 68.19 billion in 2021, USD 74.09 billion in 2022, and is projected to grow at a CAGR of 8.90% to reach USD 113.77 billion by 2027. In 2023 there will likely be some key supply chain trends to manage and help the industry grow.

Let’s take a look at what industry thinks about such trends for a few of the Indian supply chain segments.

“In partnership with World Energy, we operated the first net-zero flight powered entirely by SAF Book & Claim. While we recognise the significant logistical challenges the industry faces when it comes to the increased utilisation of SAF, this initiative has proved to be a positive step in turning the possible into the routine.” Tim Isik, Vice President Cargo Commercial, Etihad Cargo

“The government’s plan to boost air cargo has yielded results. I am confident that the newly launched National Logistics Policy, along with other pillars of PM Gati Shakti, is set to ring in ease of moving in the country, ensuring speedier and seamless movement of cargo.” Keku Gazder, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Aviapro Logistics

In 2020, air freight experienced two different, but linked impacts related to the COVID-19 pandemic. The first impact was a sharp decrease in capacity to transport freight in the bellies of passenger aircraft due to cancelled flights. However, the second impact was increase in air freight demand for certain merchandise imports. Ashish Asaf, Group Managing Director & CEO, S.A. Consultants & Forwarders Pvt Ltd

Personalisation will become a deciding factor for brand loyalty in 2023. Most customers want to be recognised by the brand to offer them personalised shopping experiences. Ecommerce will provide flexibility and return options, along with enabling in-store associates to access customer account details to provide better service. Ketan Kulkarni, Chief Commercial Officer, Blue Dart

Despite the threat of recession in major developed economies and the macro situation in India, the Indian ECommerce Industry at aggregated level is growing by 20-30%. Although this is less than the previous estimates, the long-term trend remains intact. Harshal Bhoi, Chief Business Officer, Xpressbees

Pace of tech adoption and automation will further improve in this year. In e-commerce logistics, most of the major players are already having automation at shop floor level. Now the trend is expanding towards major B2B express players and relatively smaller B2C players. Vikash Khatri, Founder, Aviral Consulting

As we reflect on 2022 and about 2023, it’s clear that supply of capital & its efficient use will continue to be a major factor in determining success. While 2021 and early 2022 saw more freely available capital, the coming year will require higher quality businesses to work harder to attract funding. Bhavik Chinai, Group CEO, BVC Logistics and Chairman, Vamaship

To further improve the buoyancy of economic activities and support the integration of Indian logistics into global value chains, bridging the distinction between maritime cargo (CFS) and air cargo (AFS) is required. Collectively, air cargo needs to move towards Multimodal Logistics Parks to derive maximum leverage from the focussed development of the aviation sector in India. Dr Surendra Ahirwar, Joint Secretary, DPIIT, MoCI

With the focus on multimodal integrated logistics enablement by the government through the Gati Shakti NMP, and private player like Maersk investing in multimodal logistics solutioning, I foresee a lot on improvement coming in waterways movement as well. Dr. Seema Narera, Vertical Head FMCG (India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka), Maersk

Cold chain companies in India are incorporating new technologies such as AI, Big Data and IoT to increase transparency and visibility in their supply chains, as well as to improve customer experience. Technological advancements and growing market share of organised players will propel the industry. Manju Korah, Vice President-Operations, Snowman Logistics

The 3PL sector is expected to continue to grow in the year 2023, driven by the need for businesses to outsource logistics and transportation services in a cost-effective and efficient manner. It is projected to grow over 11% between 2020 and 2025. Ronak Shah, Executive Director, V-Trans (India) Ltd. & CEO, V-Logis

This is an abridge version of the covers story published in the January 2023 edition of the Logistics Insider magazine. To read the full story, click here.

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