On 11 September, for the fifth consecutive year, Riga welcomes the international transport and logistics industry conference “Challenges of the Global Transport Movement” organised by VAS “Latvijas dzelzceļš” (LDz). This year, the discussions will be devoted to the development of Latvia as a logistics hub for North-European cargoes to connect the Asian countries with Scandinavia.
LDz president Edvīns Bērziņš states, “Trade has exited globally and in our region for hundreds of years; routes of product logistics, however, have changed during the last ten years at a more rapid rate than before, and the demand in faster, more beneficial and competitive solutions is growing. Instead of sea routes that have been used for centuries, the land routes are increasingly taking over the most important position. Latvia has extensive historical experience in both areas, thus gaining immense advantages in becoming a leading logistics hub for the Northern Europe via successful use of railway and port advantages.”
By marking Latvia’s potential in developing connections for the Asian region and CIS countries with Scandinavia, the country’s own experience and vision will be presented at the conference by the head of the Swedish Association of Swedish Train Operating Companies, Björn Westerberg, and the director of the Secretariat of the Northern Dimension Partnership on Transport and Logistics, Oddgeir Danielsen. In turn, the experience in cooperation with representatives from Latvian transport and logistics industry that has significantly grown during the recent years will be shared by the first deputy head of Cargo Transport and International Economic Relations Department of Belarusian Railway, Alexandr Yevsyuk.
Meanwhile, the conference will provide discussions about development perspectives and technology achievements in the future to create new synergies and development prospects. We will study tendencies and options to establish new forms of cooperation both in the transport and logistics industry, and outside it with the aim to ensure successful development of the industry operations in conditions of acute competition.
Technology development, new solutions and their effect on industry competitiveness will be presented by the United Kingdom organisation “TomorrowToday Global” co-founder, futurist Dean van Leeuwen, a USA railway industry expert, presently the Director of Economic Research at the Antitrust Division, U.S. Department of Justice and visiting professor at Kyiv School of Economics, Prof. Russell Pittman, and a representative from Siemens Osakeyhtio, Juha Lehtonen.
The first conference “Vision of Global Transport Movement” was organised four years ago seeking a broader view of the industry development and possibly a glimpse of the future several decades away. During these years, Riga and LDz’s international conference have grown into a significant meeting point for experts in the transport and logistics industry and decision-makers both from Europe and Asian countries. The visions and even fantasies made during the first conference about unmanned vehicles, drones helping to deliver packages to end-addressees, and 3D printers allowing printing necessary household items, have become real.
VAS Latvijas dzelzceļš is a public railway infrastructure manager and the Latvian Railways Group holding company. The group includes six subsidiaries: AS LatRailNet, which determines infrastructure charges and distributes railway infrastructure capacity; SIA LDz CARGO, which provides rail freight and international passenger transport services; SIA LDz infrastruktūra – an infrastructure construction and maintenance company; SIA LDz ritošā sastāva serviss – a rolling stock repair and maintenance company; SIA LDz apsardze – a security company; and SIA LDz Loģistika – a logistics company.