There has been a continuous growth trend of world export in the percentage of world trade from the mid-eighties of the last century until 2008. From then the growth stopped.
The flow of global capital between countries achieved its highest points seven years ago. With changes in time, growth will still be there, if you know just where to find it.
The impact that microeconomic changes and shift in trade patterns has on the global supply chain cannot be overemphasized. They sure provide opportunities as well as some challenges. Below are some developments in logistics that directly or indirectly are caused by changes in trade patterns, GDP growth or customer behavioural patterns.
PARTNERSHIP: More manufacturers are increasingly looking for supply chain innovations and gains through partnerships with logistics service providers.
END-TO-END VISIBILITY: A holistic visibility of the supply chain seeks to attain true demand-driven planning, which gives room for effective and efficient response in sourcing, supply, capacity, and demand.
COMPLIANCE: Anti-bribery and corruption laws are increasingly having an impact on supply chains, multinational businesses are insisting that no facilitation payments are made in the course of their shipments, but these same companies still choose to source from low-cost countries that are low on global transparency rankings.
SUSTAINABILITY: Customers now prefer products made and sourced in the “right way”, reducing the business-social, economic, and environmental impact of society and aiding and enhancing positive impact.
CONTINUITY: Alternative transport routes are required to support the continuing culture of outsourcing logistics services in order to be able to secure speed to market and eliminate the barest minimum risks of delay.
INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY: The increasingly growing dynamism and complexity of supply chains demand correspondingly increasing information technology solutions.
NEAR SHORING: As labour and transportation costs in Asia are beginning to rise, an increased amount of manufacturing is being brought closer to the end-users.
MULTI-CHANNEL SOURCING: End-customers are growingly sourcing through multiple channels that range from physical stores and e-commerce. The logistics sector needs to support the multi-channel strategies of its consumers.
GLOBALISATION: International, established, and growing markets have become the general business strategy for businesses, so it is important that going international should be the direction for many logistics solutions providers.
FLEXIBILITY: Meeting customers’ various demands and requirements at different locations with multiple transportation modes at different times requires a flexible supply chain that can handle changes and disruptions.
The above are some of the developments and trends that would shape the future of logistics.