As maritime is a vast, intricate and global industry, the factors that can affect trade are seen through a very wide lens and cannot be narrowed down to societal or political national influences. Global population, economy, trade and environment are shaping the way ports and vessels will operate in the next thirty years; these are the colours that paint a picture of what the maritime future will look like.
Read on to find the future trends that will affect the maritime industry.
Titanic Growth in Trade
Historically, we have only ever seen an upwards trend in seaborn trade and we will certainly continue to do so. Experts imply that pitting this trend alongside the constant growth of global GDP will see triple the current amount of goods being transported at sea in the coming decades.
We are yet to see a more practical way of delivering large volumes of cargo over long distances than shipping containers on trade vessels. The opportunity to capitalise on marine trade growth by expanding business and improving operational development in ports has never been better.
The Africa Effect
Lower child mortality rates and higher life expectancy in Africa will boost the population by hundreds of millions over the coming decades.
The African continent plays a very big part in global GDP and that role is set to become even more prominent. The significant population increase will result in a similarly sharp rise in trade to and from Africa, seeing it become a global trading force akin to the US, China and Europe.
In terms of what this currently means for the logistics industry, we can look to China as an example of a fast-developing newcomer that has firmly established itself as one of the world’s largest logistics suppliers. China only joined the WTO (world trade organisation) in 2001, and the countries that invested early are now benefiting from interconnected logistics networks between Europe and China; this has created a win-win situation for European and APAC companies who invest overseas.
With Africa seemingly set to become a similar contributor to the global supply chain industry, the opportunities for European companies to invest early and build ties with logistics businesses on the continent are definitely worth considering.
Harbouring Hope for the Environment
With the amount of goods transported around the world set for significant annual growth, the urgency to tackle climate change is likely to increase. The global transition to a cleaner maritime sector will result in the UK’s resilience to do all that is necessary to meet the commitments set out in the Paris agreement, including our pledge to produce net zero emission shipping by 2050.
Environmental sustainability in the sector will more likely benefit cash flow in the maritime industry, rather than hindering it. Less money spent on energy and fuel means more money spent on improving productivity by investing in digital practices; these digital solutions will not only improve sustainability, they will revolutionise processes, customer service, multi-site management and all the other key aspects of your business.
A Sea of Competition
Competition in the Maritime sector will increase; large financial investment in the APAC market is adding more and more logistics companies, specifically warehouses and ports, to an already saturated industry.
The constant improvements of supply chain technology will also fuel competition by improving the processes of ports that invest in logistics software. With more companies operating at high levels of efficiency, the reach, expansion and competitiveness of smaller businesses is set to increase.
Lastly, the rise in demand to match global population increases and the popularity of e-commerce will add to the workload of ports and container movements; several smaller businesses will no doubt emerge in a bid to capitalise on an industry that is constantly progressing.
If the UK harnesses the advantages that logistics software offers, as well as making the most of bespoke trade deals post Brexit, the nation is set to keep ahead of the competition and continue to be a world leader in global shipping.
Automation within the logistics industry will render paper based operations obsolete. All forms of multi-modal delivery chains will be more efficient and cost effective in the long term, thanks to the constant evolution and popularity of SCM (Supply Chain Management) systems.
The global maritime sector will be able to rely on digital documentation, making shipping transactions more seamless by removing convoluted processes such as training and certification, international operations, quality control, container management and port warehouses.
In short, the agility and transparency that automation offers our shipping will see the UK become a centre of frictionless, global sea distribution.
Waving Goodbye to Strenuous Shipping Operations
With a lot being made of the direct impact of logistics software on the shipping industry, it is worth knowing that the sooner you look into and invest in solutions, the sooner you will see an upturn in operational efficiency, business reach and staff/customer satisfaction.
For example, the CALIDUS Cargo Management system, as used by the Port of Dover [add link], has been developed in such a way that the technology is tailored to support all or specific operations in your port. Our systems are so refined they integrate warehouse, transport, tracking and billing systems on a single customer/user dashboard.
What are the modern solutions that currently assist multi-modal yard and container facilities?
The use of a Bay Diary digitally logs collection activity to facilitate delivery slots.
The Yard and Container Management includes warehousing, yard storage and shipping container arrivals and loading.
Lastly, the Terminal Management drives efficiency across end-to-end multi-modal terminal operations, controlling bulk, palletised and container based goods across the entire supply chain.
CALIDUS Cargo Management: Looking to jump aboard?
As leading software solutions providers, our systems are tailored to your most specific operational needs to successfully improve seamlessness and efficiency.
Alternatively, click here to request a demo for CALIDUS Cargo Management by registering your interest for WMS.