Prof. Islam El-Nakib
Can Egypt enhance freight logistics with COMESA?
Freight logistics plays an important role in supporting trade for all nations which directly impact economic growth. Transport routes have now become more congested and limited in some cases, in addition to the rising concern about the role of transport movements in accelerating climate change. Transportation is considered as one of the main challenges for Egypt to approach the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) market. Egypt is one of the fastest growing emerging markets in COMESA as it has high export potentials in a large number of sectors due to the competitive advantages in many manufacturing industries and its lucrative geographical location. However, there is little detailed understanding of the nature of Egypt’s freight logistics system. Therefore, this paper examines the freight logistics process from Egypt to three proposed Regional Distribution Centres (RDCs) in COMESA. These three RDCs are ed based on 16 location decision criteria. An examination of the barriers facing the freight logistics movement have been examined to point out the barriers of the freight journey from the Egyptian seaports to the destination i.e. the proposed RDCs in COMESA market. It was imperative to highlight the barriers that face the freight logistics movement starting from Egyptian seaports to the proposed RDCs in COMESA market. In addition, this study is verified by a survey of more than 200 traders from Egypt and COMESA to outline the factors affecting the transport process competitiveness of Egyptian freight logistics to COMESA countries. Finally, the paper concludes with the identification of the challenges involved in the enhancing the freight logistics to COMESA and the recommendation of actions to be considered among the freight logistics activities that are involved in international trade.