The Asia Pacific region’s logistics industry continues to develop at a fast rate despite the economic weakness of its two largest trade partners, Europe and the United States, according to a report by the U.K.-based consultancy Transport Intelligence (Ti).
The report, Asia Pacific Transport & Logistics 2013
, suggests that shifting trade lanes, the growth of the ASEAN community and intra-regional trade have prompted a transformation of the region’s logistics market and significant investment by logistics providers.
“As trade dynamics change with its largest trade partners, the EU and the U.S., Asia Pacific is in search of new partners to facilitate the continued growth of its export market,” Ti said. “Africa, for example, is among the fastest growing trade markets for China; trade between the two increased over 25 percent in 2012. According to China’s Ministry of Commerce, African trade will likely surpass the Europe and the U.S. as China’s largest trade partner in the next three to five years.”
Meanwhile, the increase in intra-Asian trade is the result of several factors, including the relocation of manufacturing to such countries as Vietnam and Cambodia.
“In addition, the onset of 2015 will bring a new economic bloc – ASEAN Community. This new economic bloc is supporting substantial infrastructure improvements, linking the member countries together via road, rail, air and sea. Not only are the countries linking together, but also with China and India to aid further development of intra-Asia trade,” Ti's report said.
Ti noted that while Asia’s infrastructure has been oriented towards exports, building projects are now being undertaken to meet import and domestic needs. For example, the need for warehousing is great throughout Asia Pacific, while road transportation across the region continues to attract the attention of logistics providers.
“Logistics providers continue to be drawn to Asia Pacific despite the global economic upheaval,” said Cathy Roberson, Ti senior analyst and author of the report. “Through the support of government funding for major infrastructure developments, the region provides considerable opportunities for logistics providers to develop their service offerings and expand their business.” - Eric Johnson