South Africa, Egypt, Benin Republic, Botswana, Namibia, Djibouti and Rwanda are better rated than Nigeria in the latest global Logistics Performance Index (LPI) released by the World Bank.
The LPI is an interactive bench-marking tool created to help countries identify the challenges and opportunities they face in their performance on trade logistics, including shipping and what they can do to improve their performance.
The LPI report, titled “Connecting to Compete 2023: Trade Logistics in an Uncertain Global Economy,” provides a measure of countries’ ability to move goods across borders with speed and reliability, the report is coming after three years of unprecedented supply chain disruptions during the COVID-19 pandemic, with soaring delivery times.
Covering 139 countries, the LPI measured the ease of establishing reliable supply chain connections and the structural factors that make it possible, such as the quality of logistics services, trade, transport-related infrastructure, and border controls.
The report which is based on a maximum score of 5.0, adjudged South Africa as the best in Africa and 19th in the world with a score of 3.4 per cent, followed by Botswana and Egypt which scored 3.1 per cent each to place a joint 57th position globally.
However, Botswana is better rated than Egypt due to the performance of its Customs.
Benin Republic, which many importers in Nigeria prefer its ports due to logistics convenience and Namibia are on the 66th position while Rwanda on the 73rd spot, and Djibouti (79th) are clearly rated ahead of Nigeria (88th) in the World Bank LPI report.
Congo Democratic Republic, Guinea Bissau, Mali and Nigeria share the 88th spot among the 139 countries assessed, with a score of 2.6 per cent apiece.
Bangladesh, Dominican Republic Guatemala, Uzbekistan and Russia are other jurisdictions outside the African continent that are in the joint 88th position.
Nigeria posted 2.6 per cent (Customs); 2.4 per cent on logistics infrastructure, 2.5 per cent on international shipments, 2.3 per cent on logistics competence and quality, 3.1 on timeliness and 2.7 on tracking and tracing.
The Nigeria Customs Service was also rated 90th among the 139 countries, behind their South Africa and Beninoise counterparts ranked at 31st and 65th positions respectively.
On the overall scale, the 2023 LPI report ranked Singapore number one in the world with 4.3 per cent score, followed by Finland in the second place with 4.2 per cent.
Another Scandinavian country, Denmark with 4.1 per cent shared the third position with Germany, Netherlands and Switzerland.
Giving an insight into the report, the World Bank revealed that the survey was conducted between September 6 and November 5, 2022 and contains 4,090 country assessments by 652 logistics professionals in 115 countries across all World Bank regions.
The report highlighted the crucial importance of resilience and reliability in the performance of logistics.
According to the Global Director for Trade, Investment, and Competitiveness at the World Bank, Mona Haddad, “Logistics are the lifeblood of international trade, and trade in turn is a powerful force for economic growth and poverty reduction. “The LPI helps developing countries identify where improvements can be made to boost competitiveness.”
The LPI 2023 report revealed that end-to-end supply chain digitalisation, especially in emerging economies, is allowing countries to shorten port delays by up to 70 per cent compared to those in developed countries. Moreover, demand for green logistics is rising, with 75 per cent of shippers looking for environmentally friendly options when exporting to high-income countries.
However, the report also noted that most time is spent in shipping, adding that the biggest delays occur at seaports, airports, and multimodal facilities.
It pointed out that policies targeting these facilities can help improve reliability, including improving clearance processes and investing in infrastructure, adopting digital technologies, and incentivising environmentally sustainable logistics by shifting to less carbon-intensive freight modes and more energy-efficient warehousing.
On average across all potential trade routes, 44 days elapse from the time a container enters the port of the exporting country until it leaves the destination port, with a standard deviation of 10.5 days.
That span represents 60 per cent of the time it takes to trade goods internationally.
The LPI report provides valuable information for policymakers and stakeholders involved in the logistics industry. It helps identify areas where countries can improve their logistics performance, thereby enhancing their competitiveness in the global marketplace.
Ndubuisi Francis in Abuja