The National Logistics Policy 2022: Summary and Comments from the Geospatial Industry
Effective logistics and supply chain management are the backbone of a nation’s economy, driving efficiency in infrastructure creation and management, service delivery, and resource optimization. Blatantly speaking, the existence of an efficient logistics system underpins all economic activity across levels.
The logistics landscape in India has been bleak for years on end, with a highly fragmented sector spread across over 20 government agencies, 40 partner government agencies (PGAs), 37 export promotion councils, 200 shipping agencies, 500 certifications, 10,000 commodities, a 12 million workforce and a $160 billion market size (Source: Government of India).
While the PM Gati Shakti National Master Plan for Multimodal Connectivity brings forth a transformative approach to integrate existing and proposed infrastructure development initiatives by different actors, improve efficiencies and reduce costs, the National Logistics Policy 2022 by the Government of India is the much-needed next step for the development of the entire logistics spectrum in India.
Salient Aspects of the National Logistics Policy 2022
Launched on September 17, 2022, in New Delhi by the Hon’ble Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the National Logistics Policy 2022 dwells on the vision “to develop a technologically-enabled, integrated, cost-efficient, resilient, sustainable, and trusted logistics ecosystem in the country for accelerated and inclusive growth.”
NLP 2022 also lays down some very clear and focussed targets for the decade, including a reduction in logistics costs from ~14% of the GDP to an average of 8% as per global benchmarks by 2030, endeavour to be among the top 25 countries in the Logistics Performance Index ranking by 2030, and creation of data-driven decision support mechanisms for an efficient logistics ecosystem.
NLP 2022 has the following major highlights:
The Comprehensive Logistics Action Plan
The Policy will be implemented through a Comprehensive Logistics Action Plan (CLAP), interventions which are divided into eight key action areas, including:
- Integrated digital logistics systems
- Standardisation of physical assets and benchmarking service quality standards
- Logistics human resources development and capacity building
- State Engagement
- EXIM (export-import) logistics
- Service improvement framework
- Sectoral plan for efficient logistics, and
- Facilitation of development of logistics parks
Integration of Digital System (IDS)
The policy establishes an integrated digital system (IDS) that would consolidate the digital data from 30 systems across 7 government ministries onto a single platform. Through the IDS, the policy realises its main goal of streamlining operations through a single point of contact for business-to-business and business-to-government transactions and ensuring secure data sharing. Road transportation, railways, customs, aviation, and commerce are among the 7 ministries in focus.
Unified Logistics Interface Platform (ULIP)
ULIP was identified as one of the seven initiatives under the “Technology Commons” vision of the Hon’ble Prime Minister, aimed at leveraging technology in priority areas through world-class products/services.
ULIP aims at breaking individual siloes, promoting integration among various Ministries/Departments, and creating a single window to ensure efficiency and transparency in the logistics industry. It will also help reduce delays and errors in processes due to manual activity. The platform will be open for use to government and private agencies, service providers, shippers, and consignees alike, enabling information exchange on a real/near real-time basis amongst all stakeholders confidentially.
The ULIP is based on the Logistics Data Bank Project by the National Industrial Corridor Development Programme, an ambitious initiative to develop futuristic industrial cities in India.
E-LogS: Dashboard for Ease of Logistics Services
E-LogS has been envisaged under NLP 2022 as a digital system for registering, coordinating, and monitoring the resolution of user issues on which authorised user associations can register. They may then upload their issues and suggestions.
The E-LogS dashboard will be a one-stop portal for the submission of logistics service-related feedback and evidence-based decision-making on the pillars of digitised recording, tracking, and resolution. It will also act as a repository of institutional knowledge
System Improvement Group (SIG)
A Network Planning Group (NPG) and a Service Improvement Group (SIG) will be established under the National Logistics Policy to enhance collaboration across departments and between the federal and state governments. Planning heads from the Ministries of Railway, Road, Transport & Highways, Ports, Shipping and Waterways, Civil Aviation, Petroleum & Natural Gas, Power & Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, and Department of Telecommunications will make up the NPG. Members of the NPG, the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MOHUA), the Department of Revenue (CBIC and GSTN), the Department of Commerce, the DPIIT, and any additional co-opted members shall make up the SIG.
Views of the Geospatial Industry on the National Logistics Policy 2022
While the National Logistics Policy 2022 is nothing less than a gamechanger for the entire infrastructure spectrum in India, its focus on cutting-edge technology interventions for doing away with departmental siloes is a welcome move; one that can be further empowered with Geospatial technology integration.
Pramod Kaushik, President AGI and Managing Director, Hexagon India remarks, “Geospatial technologies are a key enabler for the logistics and transportation industries, helping monitor transport routes, fleets and schedules, enhancing visibility, suggesting optimum and alternative routing, inventory management, etc. The National Logistics Policy, with its focus on creating a holistic transport network for the country by integrating 30+ data systems, is essentially opening the doors to multiple Geospatial technology applications. At the same time, by aligning a “double engine growth” with the PM Gati Shakti GIS masterplan initiative, NLP will address some of the biggest structural bottlenecks for both external and internal trade in India.”
The National Logistics Policy, with its focus on creating a holistic transport network for the country by integrating 30+ data systems, is essentially opening the doors to multiple Geospatial technology applications.
- – Pramod Kaushik, President AGI
Nikhil Kumar, Senior Vice President AGI and President – Geospatial, MapmyIndia notes, “The National Logistics Policy is a great initiative. Platforms such as the Unified Logistics Interface Platform (ULIP) would amply leverage geospatial and location intelligence technologies to address various issues of the logistics sector thereby improving efficiency and reducing the high cost of logistics in the country.”
Vishal Anand, Vice President AGI and Head of Sales & Partner Business, Esri India highlights the massive potential of the policy announcement in the following words: “The much-awaited National Logistics Policy has re-established the fact that technology is the key driving force when it comes to achieving more streamlined processes, impactful reduction in cost, employment generation, skilled workforce, and more.”
“With initiatives like the PM Gati Shakti Master Plan, Unified Logistics Interface Platform (ULIP), and e-logs, the Government is rightly setting the tone for a robust Digital India where Geospatial technologies have an important role to play. Geospatial technologies are already helping the logistics sector to achieve higher efficiency and a stronger policy framework and such digital transformation initiatives will lead to larger adoption and more efficacy,” he adds.
Sreeramam GV, Secretary General AGI and CEO NeoGeoInfo Technologies remarks on the many possibilities for the industry as: “The National Logistics Policy 2022, unveiled recently, is a very welcome initiative by the government. The Policy aims to reduce the cost of logistics from the current level of 12-13 percent of GDP. The Focus on Re-engineering, Digitization and Multi-modal transport is a huge opportunity for the Geospatial Industry, as any aspect of transport requires locational Intelligence. Mapping of all existing Modes of transport and bringing technological changes in the current process will achieve the aimed reduction of cost.”
He adds, “Geospatial technologies like Digitization and GNSS along with the recently established CORS Network, Geofencing, Route Analysis, etc. shall bring enormous cost reduction. The proposed ULIP (Unified Logistics Interface Platform) to bring ease of Logistics should ideally be a Geospatial based Platform, as that would give the capability to analyse multiple transport modes simultaneously. The logistics market, estimated to be more than USD 300 Billion by 2025, is huge and can boost the Geospatial Industry. This policy, along with Gati Shakti have the potential to revolutionize the Geospatial Industry.”
Deepak Awari, Secretary AGI and Director Strategy & Development, Secon Pvt Ltd shares, “The National Logistics Policy is transformative, it will lead to an increase in demand for locational intelligence (LI) tools to boost supply chain efficiencies and provide geospatial companies like SECON an opportunity to redesign logistic chains.”