Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Freight, Shipping And Logistics News Update

Some News in Brief from the Past Week around the Globe
Shipping News Feature

US - The Surface Transportation Board are to meet in May with a view to studying ways to increase intermodal competition, not the first time this subject has come up recently. Lobbyists for industries such as mining say that rail freight rates are too high whilst railroad companies insist they have to maintain infrastructure. The Board will look at ensuring tracks are shared to allow consumers a choice of freight carriers. A spokesman for the Association of American Railroads said under the current system there had been almost $500 billion invested by rail companies in the past three decades.

NETHERLANDS - PepsiCo has awarded a ten-year contract to Kuehne + Nagel for its Dutch warehousing and distribution activities. By integrating PepsiCo into Kuehne + Nagel’s Dutch distribution network, fewer kilometres will be needed to transport salty snacks, cereals and nuts from Belgian and Dutch manufacturing sites to the distribution centre in Utrecht and further to retailers throughout the Netherlands. In addition, Kuehne + Nagel will develop a new state-of-the-art, multi-user FMCG (Fast Moving Consumer Goods) campus in Utrecht, equipped with high bay storage and automatic layer picking during the first year of the agreement.

BENELUX - The Chartered Institute of Logistics & Transport (CILT) has announced it is launching a new Regional Group within the Benelux countries. There will be an inaugural event on the 8th February to focus on subjects such as the role of the Netherlands in European logistics, how is the private sector combining with academia to drive logistics innovation and what is the substance behind Cross Chain Control Centres? The event will also serve to provide an introduction to the CILT(UK) in the Benelux region as an Institute that provides a broad range of services to English-speaking professionals in the UK and Europe and an introduction to the Dutch Institute of Advanced Logistics (Dinalog) designed to promote research and development in logistics and the supply chain in the Netherlands. Details HERE.

RUSSIARussian Railways released cargo statistics confirming they transported over 1,200 billion tonnes of freight in 2010, a year on year increase of almost 9%. In a country where the rail freight industry plays such an important role, both for domestic and international shipping this can only be good but analysts envisage it will still be at least two years for traffic levels to reach the levels attained prior to 2007.

UK – After taking over Southend Airport haulage firm Eddie Stobart have won their battle against some local objections to obtain permission to lengthen the runway, and now have a similar problem with Carlisle Airport. Cumbrian residents are split between the promise of jobs and the increased noise and pollution they believe will result if Stobart develop the site as a haulage and air freight base. After initially receiving planning permission for a near 400,000 square foot freight terminal this was rescinded when a Court ruled a full environmental impact study was required.

UK – NORWAY - Norwegian group Sea-Cargo AS, which operates a fleet of seven multi purpose RoRo and container/general cargo vessels, has acquired a controlling interest in Northwards, a Shetland Island haulier formed when P & O lost the islands ferry contract. Sea-Cargo has offices or agencies in Ireland, Denmark and the Netherlands plus Aberdeen as well as throughout their home country. Local press speculate that a freight service from Shetland to Norway may result from the deal.

WEST AFRICA – CENTRAL ASIA – Logistics giant CEVA (formerly TNT) has announced it intends to open new offices in Angola, Congo and Nigeria, and Kazakhstan, principally due to demand from the rapid growth of the energy sector in both of these regions. The new locations will come under the management of CEVA’s Southern Europe, Middle East & Africa (SEMEA) region and offer a full range of supply chain products including warehousing, air and sea freight and heavy lift services.