The logistics industry is facing enormous challenges. And the situation is being made all the more difficult by the current economic environment: Political disputes are slowing down trade – which is having a huge impact on logistics providers. The role of climate change in public discourse is leading to greater pressure to innovate – including in this sector. And last but not least, the digital revolution is demanding a great deal of attention. This is why the motto of this year’s International Supply Chain Congress on 23–25 October is quite appropriate: Inspire – Encourage – Act.
Robert Blackburn, Chairman BVL
“We will find solutions for the demands of the future if we don’t remain frozen with “German fear”, but instead meet the challenges in business, politics and society head-on.”
Socio-political changes as well as technological dynamics necessitate resolute determination to act and show courage and mutual encouragement. All this lies within this central idea. DB Schenker will also be on hand at the congress, with its own stand and high-quality personnel – and is looking forward to guests stopping by stand P22 in Room Potsdam.
The issues are challenging, but one is dominating the meeting above all: The digitalization of the sector. The digital revolution will profoundly change industrial manufacturing around the globe. The interconnecting of platforms, blockchains, artificial intelligence and swarms of cyber/physical systems will create a new economy, which will also turn the logistics sector on its head.
The fusion of production and logistics
This is not just a matter of technical challenges, such as 5G, blockchain or artificial intelligence and data analysis. It is also about fusing the logistic and production processes within industry 4.0. Data protection and IT security also constitute issues here. The recent cyberattacks on companies in Germany and Europe have just illustrated just how important digital security strategies are.
Answers to the question of who will implement digital change the fastest are also yet to be found. Will it be family businesses, well-connected partners or small start-ups? More than 350 young companies have now established themselves in the various areas of the logistics industry in Germany alone. At the same time though, the increasing pressure of competition is demanding that planning and controlling are automated more quickly and are data-based. And lastly: How can employees be retained? How can employers become more attractive?
Political statements an the Supply Chain Congress
And finally, visitors are sure to be eagerly awaiting the Federal Minister for Transport and Digital Infrastructure, Andreas Scheuer. Under the title “Digital, Interconnected, Climate-Friendly – Transport Policy for a Successful Future”, he will be unveiling the projects with which the government wants to strengthen the logistics sector: from the “Logistics 2030 Innovation Program” to the “Action Alliance for Combined Transport”. Guy Verhofstadt, the former Belgian Prime Minister and current Member of the European Parliament, will take a European look at these issues.
As the organizers say: We will find solutions for the demands of the future if we don’t remain frozen with “German fear”, but instead meet the challenges in business, politics and society head-on. Inspire, encourage, act – that’s the right approach for this industry.