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Industry adds its voice to the implementation of the Logistics Master Plan

Posted: 22 Jan 2019

As Namibia advances towards becoming an important transit route for cargo into southern Africa, we continue to develop and transform ourselves into a logistics hub for the region. Appointed by the government to spearhead the effective implementation of the Namibia Logistics Hub Initiative, the Walvis Bay Corridor Group (WBCG) continues to create platforms to have thematic intervention and dialogue with the industry to share information, solicit input and keep the momentum going towards Namibia becoming a Logistics Service Centre for the region.

It is against this background that logistics industry stakeholders from the private and public sectors gathered in Walvis Bay recently to attend the Logistics Hub Forum, where they were apprised of the progress made on the implementation of the National Logistics Master Plan.    

The Walvis Bay Corridor Group has been tasked as the executing agency to coordinate the activities of the Master Plan. In order to ensure wide spread stakeholder involvement with the implementation of the plan, the WBCG with support from JICA and GIZ, formalized various working groups consisting of members from both the public and private sectors. These working groups core function is to reach consensus on various programs and initiatives and ensure buy in and support from their respective institutions.

The four working groups focused on the development of the logistics hub centre, the strategic marketing programme, the capacity development programme and the integrated border management programme. The Chairpersons of the working groups updated the forum on their progress and the way forward for the coming year. WBCG’s project leader, Gilbert Boois applauded the teams on their efforts thus far, commending them on their commitment to the project.

Addressing the industry stakeholders, Japan’s Ambassador to Namibia, H.E. Hideaki Harada confirmed his support of Namibia’s logistics hub vision, emphasizing that the Master Plan for International Logistics Hub, can potentially unlock the Namibian economy towards an industrialised nation. He further commended the Walvis Bay Corridor Group for pursuing the challenging tasks towards the realisation of Namibia as the logistics hub in the region, “The importance of your work cannot be stressed enough.“

An additional crucial project identified by the National Logistics Master Plan, the Namibia State of Logistics report was presented by the Namibian German Centre for Logistics, who are conducting the research. The report aims to assess the performance of the country’s Logistics Industry with the view to identify our current position in order to improve on this performance and is due for release in the first quarter of 2019.

According to Mr. Boois, the list of proposed programmes and actions involve many stakeholders from both the public and private sectors with different interests and priorities. “It is important that these programmes be implemented in an integrated manner in order to realise the synergy of all the factions”.  

The Logistics Master Plan is coordinated by a Steering Committee, chaired by the National Planning Commission. There are however many role players working towards ensuring its implementation. Special recognition should be given to GIZ and JICA, who provide technical and financial assistance to ensure the implementation of the various programmes being developed under Namibia’s Logistics Master Plan.

About the National Logistics Master Plan

Namibia has adopted a National Strategy, enshrined in our NDP 4 and further expanded in the current NDP5, to exploit our geographical and other latent advantages to position Namibia as a prominent Trade Route for SADC and beyond, commonly referred to as the Namibia Logistics Hub Project. 

The Walvis Bay Corridor Group is proud to continue to play a coordinating role in the collective efforts by Government and the private sector to ensure we achieve this vision. For this reason we launched the Namibia Logistics Hub Forum in December 2014 to serve as a platform that allows for thematic intervention and dialogue with the industry to share information, solicit input and keep the momentum going towards the effective implementation of the Logistics Hub Project.

The Logistics Hub Forum is a platform to engage stakeholders within Namibia’s logistics and transport sector, which aims to create awareness with regards to information pertaining to the sector. It is hosted regularly by the Walvis Bay Corridor Group and encourages discussions covering various topics related to the logistics and transport sector. Credible speakers on transport and logistics related themes of national relevance are invited to present their perspective on specific disciplines within this sector.

As the implementing agency for the National Logistics Hub project, the mission of the WBCG is amongst others to facilitate and promote transport and trade along our secure and reliable corridors as well as provide innovative service offerings to our customers.

 Logistics Hub Forum speakers, consultants and development partners. 
Front from left: Tadashi Kikuchi – JICA Namibia, H.E. Hideaki Harada – Japan Ambassador to Namibia, Lynn Harmon – CDC Corridor Development Consultants, Brenda Scrooby – CDC Corridor Development Consultants,  Gilbert Boois – Walvis Bay Corridor Group, 
Back from left: Ernst Riehle – GIZ, Frank Busse – HPC Hamburg Port Consulting, Clive Smith – Walvis Bay Corridor Group, Immanuel !Hanabeb – Namport, Logan Fransman – Namibian-German Centre for Logistics