‘’The logistics industry is one of the key sectors of the Indian economy that has seen immense growth in the last couple of years. With improved logistics infrastructure, there is a significant growth potential of e-commerce and trade in general, especially in tier 2/3 cities and rural areas.
From the Union Budget FY2021-22, the expectations for the logistics industry are a series of supportive initiatives, such as effective execution of a well-defined National Logistics Policy (NLP), rationalization and relaxation of taxes for warehousing, and focus on creating a skilled workforce for logistics and supply chain. Several players, driven largely by the e-commerce boom, have implemented some of the latest technologies such as automation, IoT, AI/ML for smart warehousing and logistics. In order to provide the much-needed impetus, the industry is expecting policy support and tax relaxations that will help infuse investment particularly on technology and make India’s logistics industry more competitive globally. Furthermore, subsidy/incentives for usage of Electric Vehicle (EVs) for logistics purposes and for transportation of goods could go a long way to help EV adoption in the long run.
Rising fuel prices present a challenge for logistics industry, as increasing costs typically force players to either raise prices or suffer financial losses. Therefore, neutralization or relief measures must be provided by government so that the pressure on the transportation costs is contained and it does not have an impact on viability of operations.
Given the nature of pan-India presence of logistics companies, we expect policies that make it easy for businesses to manage multiple offices spread across the country. Not all businesses have resources to meet the micro level compliance requirements under various laws, such as The Shops and Establishments Act, Trade Licenses and CLRA provisions. The government should ease rules and also offer support/exemptions or single-window clearances to small and medium businesses from certain mandatory compliances.
Overall, the post-pandemic budget is expected to keep logistics as a priority sector. Increased allocations in the Union Budget FY2021-22 for logistics can benefit other sectors too and create a strong backbone for our country’s lifeline.’’