A logistics barometer for South Africa : towards sustainable freight mobility
CITATION: Havenga, J. H., et al. 2016. A logistics barometer for South Africa : towards sustainable freight mobility. Transport and Supply Chain Management, 10(1), a228, doi:10.4102/jtscm.v10i1.228.
The original publication is available at http://www.jtscm.co.za
Background: South Africa has a disproportionately high freight transport demand owing to industrial development far from ports, low domestic beneficiation and improper modal use. Historical freight transport policy supported primary economic development, failing to preempt the changing economic structure and the resulting freight transport needs, resulting in excessive transport costs and externalities. Objectives: To share the macroeconomic freight transport challenges revealed by South Africa’s Logistics Barometer, and to identify key interventions to address these. Method: Freight flows are modelled by disaggregating the national input–output model into 83 commodity groupings and 372 geographical areas, culminating in a 30-year forecast at 5-year intervals for three scenarios, followed by distance-decay gravity modelling to determine freight flows. Logistics costs are calculated by relating these flows to the costs of fulfilling associated logistic functions. Results: Long-distance transport remains the largest general freight typology and is, due to inefficient macro logistics design, extremely costly, both in terms of intrinsic and extrinsic costs. Conclusion: South Africa’s freight task will grow 2.5-fold by 2043. Logistics and externality costs are already untenable at current levels. The development of domestic intermodal solutions will support the drive towards sustainable freight mobility.
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