More than 500 delegates are expected to convene in Kigali this month to deliberate on emerging trends in the logistics business, Fed Seka, the Chairperson of the East African Freight Forwarders Association, has said.
The third Global Logistics Convention in East Africa will take place from August 29-30.
Seka said industry players will engage with policymakers on emerging trends, opportunities and threats to the sector.
“It is, therefore, an opportunity for everyone to come and taste what Rwanda and the East African region offers. We will be discussing issues affecting the transport and freight logistics sector with professionals from around the world,” he said. “Challenges in the industry will also be tackled.”
The transport and freight logistics sector is grappling with high container guarantees charges—the money paid to shipping lines for carrying a container from the port.
Seka said the fee is $2,000 per container, which is a lot.
“The best practice is that this should be done through the insurance instead of paying cash,” he appealed.
The delegates will also deliberate on non-tariff barriers that traders encounter along the northern and central corridor, which have continued to hurt business.
Among others, Seka said, they will be looking at how to improve air cargo transport.
Air cargo transport remains expensive and less competitive, raising the cost of doing business.
“We shall also look into how our transport and freight logistics sector can facilitate e-commerce, and how it can help in the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).”
The agreement, one of the largest free trade areas since the formation of the World Trade Organisation, 24 years ago, entered into force in May this year.
African leaders on July 7 launched the operational phase of the agreement as well as its operational instruments.