National Logistics Policy to be announced soon: Special secretary

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The much-anticipated national logistics policy will soon be announced, said Pawan Kumar Agarwal, Special Secretary (Logistics), Department of Commerce and Industry during an ASSOCHAM webinar on Tuesday.

The Policy will lay out a robust framework for action to bring about improvements in the logistics and supply chain management for the country, the Special secretary said.

“In India, we had to devise our own formulations for the national logistics policy and therefore it has taken a little longer than what it should have taken, but I can assure you that we have reached the finality on this and I think you will soon see the final logistics policy in place,” said Mr Agarwal during the virtual event.

While speaking about the complexities of the sector, the special secretary said, “Unless we get down to details and go down to specific commodities, geographies, modes of transport, concerns, we may just keep wandering without achieving much. This is precisely what we have been doing over the past 5-6 months,” Agarwal said.

“Under the plan we have identified 12 areas that are levers of change that we would focus on – policy coherence, regulatory coherence, use of automation and mechanisation of warehousing, standardisation and unitisation of cargo, digital transformation, multi-modality, logistics infrastructure, professionalisation of human resources, green & clean logistics and others.”

~Pawan Kumar Agarwal, Special Secretary (logistics), Department of commerce and industry

While elaborating upon how these aspects would be covered in the national logistics policy, Mr Agarwal said, “I do hope that the policy is soon announced. We are not waiting for initiating action, in many areas we have already initiated action and are in different stages of implementation.”

ASSOCHAM’s senior vice-president, Mr Vineet Agarwal also echoed the sepcial secretary’s thoughts as he spoke about how there is a necessity to look at more incremental changes instead of large interventions for the sector with respect to policy and regulatory issues.

“Standardisation and design innovation based on India-centric needs together with streamlining of processes would reduce time and logistics costs”, he said.

The sppcial secretary also underlined the importance of co-ordination and how the focus is on co-ordination at all levels.“This coordination arrangement needs to be institutionalised as to how we bring in a more robust structure of coordination at the national level, state level and between states and the centre,” he explained.

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