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In Focus: Hinterland Connectivity

Dr. Felix Kasiske spoke to Port Technology International about hinterland connectivity and the increasing need of automation and the challenges of adjusting processes, and integration of all equipment into the existing IT landscape of rail terminals.

With efficiency and economic considerations at the forefront of terminal operations today how does HPC see its involvement in hinterland connectivity in meeting these challenges?

“The general economic development is currently globally in a significant transition process. General trends impacting supply chain structures and cargo volumes have received a boost with the current pandemic while erratically arising uncertainties have created a much bigger awareness for supply chain resilience.

“More localised, redundant solutions as the backbone of stable economic activities have gotten more into focus, driving up the importance of hinterland connectivity as first or last mile for international supply chains but also for growing domestic activities to be anticipated.

“While there are chances for operators in domestic chains to gain business, we must expect significant pressure on the cost of their transaction which will decide on who wins in the long run. Consequently, technology-driven topics like process automation, digitalization of manual processes and information sharing to improve collaborative approaches receive more attention, easing the way how we can work together avoiding manual human interaction.

“We currently observe new dynamics in these topics, many ideas have already been discussed by pioneers in the intermodal industry but in most cases only been hesitantly realised so far. With the current situation this picture changes.”

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Interview with Dr. Felix Kasiske, Managing Director and Partner, HPC Hamburg Port Consulting