Met with a delegation today from the Puerto Arica in Chile to discuss transport and logistics. 2012 was a record year for exports and imports through the port. 75% of business comes from Bolivia and 42% of exports head for China. The majority of exports that flow through the port are agri based products and minerals. Last year export growth exceeded that of imports.
The forecast for 2013 is that the overall demand will remain strong, but unlikely to outstrip 2012. Imports are expected to tip the balance over exports, and the long-term demand for quality transport logistics is high.
The major challenges facing the industry:
1. Old and inefficient trucks making the difficult journey between Bolivia and Arica.
2. The capacity of Bolivian producers to improve their export capabilities.
3. An underdeveloped cold storage supply chain.
4. Inter-modal transfer infra-structure at port side.
Tomorrow, we drive 3 hours outside of Santa Cruz to stay at a farm and food processing factory. Sign-up to the blog or follow me on twitter @Chilasa to receive these updates. Come along for the ride!