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National Logistics Policy in India

Context:

Prime Minister announced the National Logistics Policy, aimed at easing the movement of goods and boosting the trade sector in the Indian economy.

Relevance:

GS III: Indian Economy

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. What was the need for a logistics policy?
  2. Features of the National Logistics Policy
  3. How is the government focusing on improving logistics?

What was the need for a logistics policy?

  • Logistics broadly includes facilities crucial to trade: transport services for the movement of goods, storage facilities that are particularly essential for trade in perishable goods such as food items, fruits, and vegetables, and smooth functioning of government services that facilitate trade such as licensing and customs.
  • The logistical cost in India is about 13% of GDP.
    • Such a situation does not exist in developed countries. Due to high logistical cost, the competitiveness of India’s exports is greatly reduced.
  • In a Ministry of Commerce and Industry survey last year, titled ‘Logistics Ease Across Different States’, Gujarat, Punjab, and Haryana were ranked the top three states.
  • The parameters included were the quality of road and railways infrastructure, road freight rates, quality of warehousing infrastructure, etc.
    • The survey suggested that states should focus on areas such as developing sector-specific skilling infrastructure and streamlining logistics-related approval and clearance processes.

Features of the National Logistics Policy

  • The new logistics policy has four features:
    • Integration of Digital System (IDS);
    • Unified Logistics Interface Platform (ULIP);
    • Ease of Logistics (ELOG);
    • System Improvement Group (SIG).
  • Under the IDS, 30 different systems of seven departments are integrated – including data from the road transport, railways, customs, aviation and commerce departments.
  • A Unified Logistics Interface Platform ULIP will “bring all the digital services related to the transportation sector into a single portal”.
  • Similarly, a new digital platform Ease of Logistics Services (E-Logs) has also been started for industry associations to resolve issues by reaching out to the government.

How is the government focusing on improving logistics?

The Prime Minister mentioned previous programmes and schemes aimed at improving logistics aspects, such as

FASTag:
  • FASTag is an electronic toll collection system in India, operated by the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI).
  • It employs Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology for making toll payments directly from the prepaid or savings account linked to it or directly toll owner.
  • As per NHAI, FASTag has unlimited validity. 7.5% cashback offers were also provided to promote the use of FASTag.
  • Dedicated Lanes at some Toll plazas have been built for FASTag.
PM Gati Shakti:
  • It will incorporate the infrastructure schemes of various Ministries and State Governments like Bharatmala, Sagarmala, inland waterways, dry/land ports, UDAN etc.
  • Economic Zones like textile clusters, pharmaceutical clusters, defence corridors, electronic parks, industrial corridors, fishing clusters, agri zones will be covered to improve connectivity & make Indian businesses more competitive.
  • It will also leverage technology extensively including spatial planning tools with ISRO imagery
  • The multi-modal connectivity will provide integrated and seamless connectivity for movement of people, goods and services from one mode of transport to another.
  • It will facilitate the last mile connectivity of infrastructure and also reduce travel time for people.

-Source: Indian Express


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October 2022
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