How COVID 19 has Impacted Logistics in East African Community
Logistics is a segment that is focused on the transportation and storage of goods, how and when you move your material from source, value added and transported to the customer followed by reverse logistics. This process has completely been impacted by COVID 19 pandemic. Following is how the logistics process has been impacted in East Africa:
01. Blanked Sailings
Shipping lines/ocean carriers have been forced to cancel services leading to retailers running low on imported products, manufacturers are facing depletion of imported components which are necessary for running of their production lines. Exporters are faced with logistical challenges in exporting perishable/agricultural commodities.
02. Interrupted Logistics at Ports
Due to blanked sailings, port disruption as a result of shortage of empty containers is experienced for exports.
03. Detention and Demurrage
With the implementation of compliance measures such as curfews, means port operation hours have been significantly reduced and thus time taken for container clearance and loading out of port and repatriation is significantly affected. This poses a great risk for importers’ cargo incurring heavy port storage charges as well as container detention due to delays in container repatriation.
04. Production Suspension by Businesses
Manufacturing firms which are not in the line of essential goods production like the automobile manufacturers have their plants suspend production due to the pandemic.
05. Upended/toppled Supply Chain
With the restrictions imposed and some countries closing their borders including cancelation of commercial flights, countries might take time to open their borders for resumption of normal business operations.
Was the supply chain profession ready for this pandemic? The answer in NO. This is an opportunity for experts in the region, both in private and public sector to come together and formulate elaborate policies, which will govern and propel the profession during such pandemics. Such situations require strategic partnership, collaboration, the use of artificial intelligence and information sharing to enhance smooth running of the profession.
Dr. Paul Jilani - DBA, MCIPS, CHSCA
Supply Chain, Procurement & Logistics Expert | Certified ICF Executive Coach
Certified Healthcare Supply Chain Analyst
CEO & Founder – NADHIFU Consultancy Limited
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