Smart Logistics: Future-Proofing Indian Supply Chain

Prof (Dr) Kalyana C Chejarla was a speaker at the conference on ‘Smart Logistics: Future-Proofing Indian Supply Chains organized by the Indian Chamber of Commerce on 6th October at New Delhi. The conference was attended by diverse set of logistics players covering marine, road, rail, intermodal, 3PL, AI/Automation solution providers, educationists, and policy makers

The conference saw expert and policy makers talk about Logistics innovation, and some of the fabulous developments in this regard in terms of infrastructure, policy, education, and integrated approach to solution building.

Prof Kalyan dwelt on the following:

The logistics sector in India, like farming, consists of many small players for whom this is a source of livelihood. Therefore, it is immensely important to protect the interests of the small players. Smart Logistics requires Innovations in the sector to provide a level playing ground to the unorganized sector.

Digital Transformation: By bringing up all the logistics databases, transportation modes, tracing of transactions, and all the players onto a single platform, ULIP provides a great digital democracy, especially to small players.

Supply Chain Finance: Most tier 2 and downward supply chain firms face unfavourable supply chain finance terms due to their size and perceived risks. Accepting warehouse receipts from WDRA’s registered warehouses by financial institutions is a great opportunity for the smaller supply chain players to finance the trade at reasonable rates. The industry will benefit from including other commodity classes (beyond agriculture commodities) by WDRA.

Automation: Production and Warehouse automation is economical and desirable for high-speed processes such as mass production or e-commerce fulfilment centres. The rest of the sector is workforce intensive, and unit economics will be tilted towards manual rather than automated processes for some time. It is great to see that 3PLs, such as AAJ enterprises, place significant importance on people.

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