India bets on latest reforms for higher rank in logistics

The government is set to push for a better Logistics Performance Index (LPI) with plans to brief the World Bank about recent reforms and measures taken to improve logistics efficiency through schemes such as PM Gati Shaki, an official said on Thursday.

Special secretary in the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) Sumita Dawra said there was a need for greater emphasis on an objective methodology for LPI scoring whereas the World Bank’s methodology was based on perception surveys.

India aims to break into the top 25 countries in the index ranking by 2030.

In the latest LPI for 2023, India ranks 38 out of 139 countries.

Dawra said DPIIT officials are continuously engaging with World Bank officials on the need for an objective methodology. The multilateral lender uses six parameters to measure performance of countries that include customs, infrastructure, international shipments, logistics competence, tracking and tracing, and timelines.

‘’We feel this is a very narrow way of ranking India on important global indices and there is a lot of work going on and that should be reflected in the calculations. We have analyzed the parameters and the way it is done. We would like the World Bank to include our interventions and reforms which are contributing to improve logistics in India,’’ Dawra said during a press briefing.

She also said the report on a framework to assess India’s logistics costs is ready and would be released by the end of the month.

India bets on latest reforms for higher rank in logistics

As per government’s estimates, India’s logistics costs stand are 8-14% of the gross domestic product.

“Now we have a baseline estimate and from next year we will do a survey based (exercise) to calculate the cost,’’ she said, adding that the National Council of Applied Economic Research (NCAER) and ADB have been engaged in the exercise.

Further, the special secretary said that the service improvement group constituted in March to resolve logistics related issues has so far assessed 80 issues from different departments including revenue, railways, and road.

Out of 80, 34 are resolved. There are 21 issues pertaining to the CBIC (Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs) such as matters pertaining to some ports, GST and ICEGATE (Indian Customs EDI Gateway).

As many as 106 firms have signed non-disclosure agreements with the government to access data from the ULIP, launched on September 17 last year as part of the national logistics policy.

It is a digital gateway for enabling industry players to access logistics-related datasets from various government systems through request and response-based application programming interface (API) integration.

The commerce and industry ministry also informed that during the recent Network Planning Group (NPG) meeting under the PM Gati Shakti programme as many as six projects including three projects of the Ministry of Railways (MoR) and three projects of the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH), with a total project cost of Rs. 14,081 Crore were assessed.

“ This takes the total number of projects assessed by NPG to 106 with a total value of about 11 Lakh Crore, since the launch of PM GatiShakti approach,” the ministry said.

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