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QAD Precision News Round-Up: 15 March 2019

In the QAD Precision News Round-Up: 15 March 2019, China passes new foreign investment law; UK will slash tariffs if no-deal Brexit occurs; supply chain woes hamper Adidas; DPD opens new green micro-depot in London and An Post’s profits soar. Plus we look at blockchain’s uses for parcel shipping.

Global Trade

CHINA PASSES NEW FOREIGN INVESTMENT LAW    

This week, China passed new foreign investment legislation. The vast majority of delegates attending the annual National People's Congress approved the law. A total of 2,929 voted in favour, eight against and eight abstained. The law will come into effect on 1 January 2020 and should level the playing field for foreign businesses working in China. This may help heal the country’s relationship with the US and end the trade war between the two countries. For more details, please see the BBC.

NO-DEAL BREXIT: UK TO CUT MAJORITY OF TARIFFS TO ZERO

This week, the UK government announced plans to cut tariffs to zero on 87 percent of imports to the UK if the country leaves the European Union without a deal. However, prices on some products, including meat, cars and shoes will increase. The zero-tariff plan is an attempt to prevent economic turmoil in the event of no-deal. On Wednesday, members of parliament voted against leaving the EU without a deal. However, the vote is not legally binding. The UK could still crash out of the EU. If Prime Minister cannot secure a majority for her deal, and if the EU refuses to extend the withdrawal period, no-deal is the default. For more information, please see The Guardian.

Supply Chain

SUPPLY CHAIN WOES HAMPER ADIDAS

Sportswear brand Adidas announced that supply chain issues are likely to negatively impact sales growth in the first half of the year. Adidas said that currency-neutral sales growth would slow to between 5-8 percent this year. That’s down from 8 percent in 2018. Supply issues are responsible for a 1-2 percent drop. Adidas sources most of its clothing from Cambodia, China and Vietnam. Chief executive Kasper Rorsted said the shortages had nothing to do with US trade tensions with China. In an interview with CNBC Adidas Rorsted said that it was “a demand problem.” For more information, please click here.

Carriers

DPD TO OPEN NEW GREEN FACILITY IN LONDON

Parcel carrier DPD announced that they are to open a third all-electric micro depot in Park Lane, London. These green micro depots allow for shorter journeys and fewer vans on the road as well as zero emissions. DPD Chief Operating Officer Justin Pegg confirmed that the company has ordered more electric vehicles. DPD opened the UK’s first all-electric parcel depot in October 2018. The all-electric micro depots are emission-free for incoming parcels and for last-mile deliveries. For more information, please click here.

AN POST PROFITS SOAR DUE TO E-COMMERCE PARCEL VOLUMES

Irish postal operator An Post experienced 7 percent revenue growth in 2018. Although letter volumes have significantly fallen, parcel volumes were up 40 percent, driven by online shopping. An Post’s operating profits went from €8m in 2017 to €40m last year. The jump was also helped by “tight cost control” — including closing post offices. The carrier announced plans to close more than 150 post offices last year. For more information, please click here.

QAD Precision News

BLOCKCHAIN AND PARCEL SHIPPING

Could blockchain revolutionize parcel shipping? Although more commonly associated with cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, in the last 2 years or so, blockchain’s potential for trade and transportation has been much discussed. Some of the larger use cases include a joint project by Maersk and IBM; blockchain field testing by the Municipality of Rotterdam and the Port of Rotterdam Authority; and a trial announced last August by US Customs and Border Protection.

Millions of goods cross the globe every single day, from small parcel shipments to massive containers of ocean cargo. There are many points in a product’s journey where fraud or theft could occur. In this Precision Report we examine how parcel shippers could use blockchain in the near future. To read the full report, please click here.

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