Singapore goes with the flow


Home to many multinational companies and logistics service providers, Singapore is a place where goods flow smoothly. No wonder the vibrant city-state is the pole-position holder in global logistics rankings. 

Rated the world’s top logistics hub by the World Bank Logistics Performance Index, Singapore is a cargo hub offering unparalleled connectivity to six continents out of Changi Airport. Praised for the speed of its customs clearance and timely shipments, Singapore consistently outperforms other countries in logistics performance ratings. 

Last year was the third running that Singapore topped the World Economic Forum’s Enabling Trade Index (ETI), which measures how successfully economies develop policies facilitating the free flow of goods across borders.
“Singapore has been a competitive, efficient transhipment hub for decades. Having strong connectivity coupled with excellent customs procedures enables seamless, quick transfer of shipments. Another bonus is that our transshipment charges are very competitive vis-à-vis other countries in the region,” says Sanjay Kumar, General Manager of ECS Group, Finnair’s new Singapore-based GSA as of September 2013.

Pockets of opportunity

Home to a large cluster of multinational companies and world-class logistics service providers, Singapore is a natural magnet for the flow of goods. In the last decade, intra-Asia trade has increased at a rate of 14% per annum, according to the Asia-Pacific Transport & Logistics 2013 report by Transport Intelligence. 
“We are feeling the impact of the global financial crisis, but there are pockets of opportunities in sectors such as oil, gas, medical and pharmaceutical suppliers. Two-way cargo traffic is important for Finnair Cargo. We are collaborating with their dynamic team to capitalize on this exciting opportunity,” says Kumar, who leads a team of five dedicated professionals handling everything from sales to finance on behalf of Finnair Cargo.
“Our typical day starts off with customers and ends with customers. We believe in constant engagement and quick-response service. The pace is manageable thanks to Finnair’s high level of support, processes and technology, which certainly simplifies our tasks,” says Kumar.

“Solution airline”

Finnair’s flights to Singapore operate daily during summer and four times a week in winter. Kumar is hard-pressed to name a “typical” shipment, as the spectrum ranges from live tropical fish to oil well equipment.
“We also act as a transshipment hub for cargo from Australia, Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines and Vietnam, moving commodities such as garments, shoes and leather goods.”
Kumar describes Finnair as a “solution airline” with a strong customer-centric culture unmatched by the competition. 
“Finnair is open to new concepts, enabling us to find the right solution to the diversified needs of our customers. We are proud to be part of Finnair Cargo family.” 

For love of logistics

Sanjay Kumar lives and breathes logistics. He joined the industry after graduating with a Master’s degree in Logistics Management 16 years ago – but in logistics, the learning never stops.
“I am constantly upgrading my skills and knowledge in this evolving industry.”
What inspires him off work? Again, it is logistics.
“The constant struggle to keep pace in this challenging industry keeps me motivated.”
A stopover in Singapore is a must for all visitors to Asia, says Kumar, if only for the culinary adventure.
“Our multi-racial society is a food paradise. We offer yummy Chinese, Malay, Indian and mouth-watering Peranakan dishes at reasonable prices.”
His top “must-eats” include Chinese chicken rice, chili crab, Malay satay, Malay cakes (nyonya), Indian Mutton and Chicken Murtabak.  
Text by Silja Kudel

Published December 5, 2013

Category: Local features, Finnair Cargo