Agility sets bullish logistics outlook for 2018

Kuwait-based 3PL Agility has published its “2018 Emerging Markets Logistics Index,” a sweeping overview that actually takes into consideration markets that are technically past the “emerging” designation, to provide a logistics outlook for the global economy.

The report’s airfreight coverage confirms growth where most observers expected it to be, but also delivers a few surprises, such as a 30.8 percent volume increase in U.S.-to-Russia airfreight.

Airfreight from so-called “emerging economies” saw a significant increase, as well, during 2017, with the following five countries leading the charge regarding cargo shipments to and from the European Union:  Cambodia (+44.1 percent), Indonesia (+38.6 percent), Sri Lanka (+34.3 percent), Ghana (+32.6 percent) and Philippines (+25.0 percent).

Entering a new year, Agility said that, “the global economy is clearly in an upswing; some may even call it a boom.” The Kuwaiti 3PL pointed to healthy prospects in the U.S., the Eurozone and other developed markets, concluding that this favorable international backdrop is particularly helpful for emerging market exports.

“Nevertheless, the global economy remains vulnerable to a range of downside risks,” the 3PL warned. “These include a faster and greater tightening of global financial conditions, which may well transpire if the U.S. Federal Reserve increases its base rate sooner than expected or by more than anticipated. Possible financial turmoil may also arise if China fails to counter risks associated with its expansion of credit. If a shock occurs that causes a growth slowdown in China, this would have adverse consequences for other economies through weaker trade, commodity prices and confidence.”

In addition to quantitative analysis of growing and shrinking trade lanes, the index surveys more than 500 global logistics executives, providing an annual snapshot of industry sentiment and ranking of the world’s 50 leading emerging markets by size, infrastructure, transport connections and business climate.

The full report is worth a read, as it delves into the logistics markets on a country-by-country basis, ranking size, infrastructure, transport connections and business climate to provide a comprehensive global outlay.

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