PDP Shipping & Projects Pvt. Ltd is a Mumbai based logistics company engaged in super heavy lift and super ODC consignment, floating and beaching Ro-Ro load-outs, turnkey projects, and chartering of cargo, barges, tugs, ships and tramps. Animesh Kumar shares his outlook on the Indian shipping sector in this interview with Jibran Buchh.
Has government and private sector investment in infrastructure projects increased the demand for project logistics?
Yes, it has. However, it is important to note that these investments are confined to limited locations, say, mainland, which has not proved efficient or sufficient to meet the challenges and ease congestion. Rather this investment has created awareness about the importance of developing the mainland and connecting it with the hinterland. This structure of diversified overall growth is mandatory for a country like India. Of course, this necessitates huge influx of investment for infrastructure and increased demand of the project logistics.
We now have four-lane roads and expressways connect the ports with the hinterland and from there to the actual users including industries. But we have miles to go before we achieve the standards in place in countries like China and South Korea. We are also yet to envisage environment friendly green technology.
World-class and well-equipped seaports and airports are now attracting latest generation of ships and aircraft. This is promoting the carriage of bulk and heavylift remarkably and it is a boon for investment in infrastructure projects and project logistics. It has also necessitated the demand for latest generation of storage facilities, onshore handling equipment, speedy and high-tech transportation system, double-stacked cargo box trains, dedicated (road, rail and coastal) freight corridors, and competent supply chain and warehousing.
This diversified but interlinked growth formula for infrastructure is the lone solution to end congestion and related losses.
Expenditure on logistics infrastructure tripled from $10 billion in 2003 to an estimated $30 billion last year. How do you foresee logistics infrastructure development in 12th Plan?
As per a World Bank study, logistics costs are generally 6 to 8 per cent as far as the developing nations are concerned. China has logistics costs of 10 per cent of total value of goods. Our cost of logistics is higher i.e. 13-14 per cent of the total value of goods.
Besides the infrastructure issues, the administrative costs and related delay, red tape and corruption are also genuine challenges that need to be tackled in the interest of the nation’s growth.
What is your forecast for the logistics sector?
In spite of all the odds the logistics sector witnessed a growth of 9.2 per cent over the previous year in 2010 and accounted for revenue of $82.10 billion. For the period 2010-2020, the logistics market is expected to witness a consistent minimum annual growth of 8-9 per cent to reach the revenue level of $190-200 billion in 2020.
What are some of the services offered by PDP Shipping & Projects Pvt. Ltd?
Our company is dedicated to innovative and tailor-made solutions for break-bulk, ODC and heavylift project logistics. Our core activities are chartering, sea towage, Ro-Ro load-outs, sea transportation analysis and engineering, sea fastening, multimodal transportation including the handling of super ODC and super heavylifts, turnkey projects, marine consultancy, door-to-door logistics, ship agency, NVOCC and international freight forwarding.
Can you talk about your specialisation in floating Roll On-Roll Off load-out?
Floating Ro-Ro load-outs are a rare operation in India, which we have been successfully executing. In layman’s language, it’s an art to stride, roll on and roll off the deep water surface (so far we have executed at 13-metre depth).
In the past we have done prominent Ro-Ro load-outs for clients like L&T for its MHRSP-II project of ONGC and for Essar Offshore for its D1 project of ONGC.
This operation is an innovation that helps overcome the infrastructure limitations, where there is no crane or other competent equipment in the vicinity to handle such massive & heavyweight cargo. Ro-Ro load-out technique is where cargo laden in specially built modular tailors is rolled and loaded on to the dumb barge floating in sea along the jetty.
What will be your company’s strategy in coming years?
We are forging strategic alliances while perusing the emerging markets and acquiring skilled manpower, technology and equipment. We strive towards our dream to excel and become leaders in heavylift and project logistics solutions where innovation, application, cost efficiency and technology are keys to success.