3 Focus Areas for International Logistics in 2020

Is it here?  Are we about to experience an exponential change in international logistics?  I hope so.

Let’s take a look at a few things that have some momentum, but haven’t made the leap to transform the supply chain just yet.

International Logistics Focus Areas:

 #1:Blockchain Advancement

In 2017, we saw Zim and Sparx test technology and processes for moving a shipment of containers and all bills of lading using Blockchain technology.  Because of this technology, the bills of lading were transferred to the consignee in less than two hours of vessel departure, yet this hasn’t been introduced as a mainstay in our business.  However, Logistics Management published an article that leads me to believe that we are going to see even more from this technology in the very near future. TradeLens and BiTA seem to be making great strides in this space and we will continue to keep updated on this.

#2: Ocean Container Innovation

Orion has been seeing a lot of movement on the use of Shipper Owned Containers. If you are considering this as an option for your supply chain, what about taking it a step further and using a collapsible container? The introduction of requirements around the reduction of CO2 emissions in the supply chain has been around for more than a decade. However, we’ve been mostly looking at this from the viewpoint of reducing the pollutants produced by the actual ships, trucks, and cars. There are other avenues to consider.

What about reducing the number of trips a drayage truck has to make?  What if you could collapse the ocean container and deliver 4 empties in one trip? Well, it’s possible and it’s being used by a major importer.  A company called CCBRM has introduced a collapsable intermodal container that makes an impact on CO2 emissions. Will we see more demand for this technology in 2020?  I sure hope so.


CCBRM Collapsible Container

#3: Digital Marketplace

Over the past 10 years, we have seen many attempts at introducing a digital marketplace. As you probably know, some gained greater traction than others.  Logistics Management recently reported that NYSHEX has over 60% of the global capacity represented. Sundeep Sibal, the SVP of TransPacfic with ONE says, “The guaranteed equipment, space, and price that we offer through NYSHEX will help our shippers to plan their supply chain and to lock in their transport costs upfront.” We are watching closely to see if this is the year we finally see the shippers start using these marketplaces in a much more significant way.

These are just a few of the things that will play a part in making substantial advancements in the supply chain processes.  I’m excited to see what is going to happen in 2020 and beyond.  I believe it is truly time for us to be a part of creating and executing exciting and important change in our industry.

Let’s get it done.


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