08 November 2017

CLECAT publishes Position Paper on Digital Transport and Logistics

BRUSSELS, 8 November 2017 -   On the occasion of the EU Digital Transport Days, taking place in Tallinn from 8 -10 November, CLECAT has published a position paper on Digitalisation in Transport and Logistics. CLECAT’s position paper gives the views of freight forwarders on digitalisation in transport and logistics, and contributes to ongoing initiatives such as the Digital Transport and Logistics Forum (DTLF).

Nicolette van der Jagt, Director General of CLECAT, said: “CLECAT is delighted to be participating in the Digital Transport Days, which we hope will aid in a successful push for 100% digital transport and logistics. In order for this vision to be realised, however, it is not enough simply to replicate existing documents and procedures in a digital way. It is instead vital to focus on the digital exchange of transport data, creating future-proof procedures and thus achieving the efficiency benefits of digital transport.”

CLECAT commends the achievements of the DTLF since its establishment by the European Commission in 2015, particularly the consensus among commercial and national stakeholders that the digital exchange of data within the supply chain is the way forward. The paper makes a number of recommendations to the DTLF and the European Commission in support of a swift move to a fully digital transport environment, which maximises the potential benefits for both the public and private sector:

  • Initiatives should encourage an environment where businesses themselves can create new ways to co-operate and innovate, rather than singling out one specific solution, service or system. Nonetheless, interoperability must be ensured by following existing, accepted standards.
  • Initiatives should as a matter of priority address the legal acceptance by authorities of digitally provided data. Also, interoperability between authorities should be encouraged and if needed enforced by legal measures.
  • Initiatives should not be about replacing paper transport documents with electronic equivalents, but about how to exchange data in a future-proof manner.  Nonetheless, if there are already systems, standards or processes in place that work, attempts should not be made to replace these.
  • Initiatives should lead to tangible, measurable efficiency benefits and cost reductions for business. With authorities moving towards digital and automated procedures, leading to benefits for the public sector, the benefits for trade must remain equally high on the agenda.

CLECAT’s Position Paper on Digital Transport and Logistics is available here.