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sourcing from china

Should we still source from China..??

Since the time of opening up for global trade circa 1980 to becoming an economic superpower in the 2000s and till now, China has come a long way in terms of global trade..

China’s growth in the last 30 odd years has however been marred by allegations of Chinese exporters or traders being fraudsters and scam artists creating a notoriety for them among global traders..

Even on this blog, there have been a few real-life examples and case studies from readers not happy about the way some Chinese companies/people have conducted business with them..

So has this situation changed or gotten any better..?? Should we still source from China..??

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featured image for question

Can anyone issue a House Bill of Lading..??

Say what..!!!!!!!! Yes my thought exactly when I got this question from a reader.. But then I said to myself this is a very valid and interesting question..

What is a House Bill of Lading and can anyone issue a House Bill of Lading..?? This article examines this vital question..

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beginning of the end for the freight forwarder

Is this the beginning of the end for the freight forwarder..??

In response to the question Who is a Freight Forwarder, I explained that in the most succinct and layman terms, a Freight Forwarder maybe defined as a multi-function agent/operator who undertakes to handle the movement of goods from point to point on behalf of the cargo owner..

Simple enough description.. But when one reads what happens in a day in the life of a freight forwarder it may not be so simple..

In the recent months there is a big conversation going on about the impact of “digitalisation” and “disruption” of the shipping and freight industry, to the extent that some people are terming it as the beginning of the end for the freight forwarder..

Is it really so..?? Let’s put it in perspective and see..

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Day of the Seafarer #seafarersmatter

A day in the life of a Seafarer 2 – #seafarersmatter

As you know, the 25th of June every year is celebrated as the DAY OF THE SEAFARER under the auspices of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO)..

Day of the Seafarer (DotS as it has come to be known), is celebrated to recognize the unique contribution made by seafarers from all over the world to international seaborne trade, the world economy and civil society as a whole and to let the world know how and why #SeafarersMatter and are indispensable to everyone..

In my previous post promoting this Day of the Seafarer, I shared with you the story of Nick Chubb MNI, a former Merchant Seafarer and how he spends “A Day in the Life of a Seafarer”..

This article comes right from the top, yes from a Captain himself.. Capt.Abhishek Nair recounts the life of a Captain on board a ship..

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problems with container shipments

What are the biggest problems with container shipments..??

Disruption, Innovation, Big Data, IoT, SaaS, Digital freight forwarders, Blockchain.. No its not a Thesaurus test..

These are just some of the big fancy words thrown around in the market and media currently in relation to shipping and freight..

These tools are all (or should be) designed to assist the customer, whether you are a buyer, seller, trader, forwarder, NVOCC or shipping line to conduct their business smoothly and efficiently..

Yet with all these advances, innovations, digitization etc customers still have problems with container shipments on a daily basis.. Whether it is with a shipping line, with a forwarder, with customs, with port, with hauliers etc etc etc, there are still many problems on a daily basis..

So my question today is, in spite of such advances in technology, communication, operations, trade documentation and accessibility why are many customers still facing problems with container shipments..??

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