I Mini­ratna to CRWC: All set to of­fer in­no­va­tive so­lu­tions in 2014

Eco­nomic re­ces­sion has af­fected the Lo­gis­tics In­dus­try and re­lated Ware­hous­ing across the coun­try. How­ever, in Cen­tral Rail­side Ware­house Com­pany (CRWC) there has been a steady growth. Sig­nif­i­cantly, the com­pany re­cently achieved Mini Ratna (Cat­e­gory-II)

Cargo Talk - - Contents - RATAn KR PAuL

c RWC, which is un­der the Min­istry of Con­sumer Af­fairs, Food & Pub­lic Dis­tri­bu­tion, Depart­ment of Food & Dis­tri­bu­tion, Govt. of In­dia, is an ISO cer­ti­fied com­pany. It de­vel­ops, de­signs, con­structs and op­er­ates rail-side ware­houses for han­dling train loads of com­modi­ties across the coun­try. The com­pany pro­vides in­te­grated lo­gis­tics so­lu­tions through in­fra­struc­ture de­vel­op­ment by de­vel­op­ing lo­gis­tics hubs and cold chain ware­houses. It is a profit mak­ing and div­i­dend pay­ing PSU, CRWC, and due to its ex­cel­lent per­for­mance, has been granted the Mini Ratna Sta­tus.

In CRWC, 2014 will have ma­jor op­por­tu­ni­ties in the de­vel­op­ment of freight

Mech­a­ni­sa­tion of cargo-han­dling pro­cesses and fill­ing up the skill gaps are the ma­jor chal­lenges at present.” Vinod Asthana MD, Cen­tral Rail­side Ware­house Com­pany

ter­mi­nals, cold-chain lo­gis­tics and rail re­lated busi­ness op­por­tu­ni­ties. The busi­ness di­ver­si­fi­ca­tion and ex­pan­sion plans shall be im­ple­mented in the or­gan­i­sa­tion. “Af­ter wit­ness­ing a slow­down in 2013 in both do­mes­tic and in­ter­na­tional sec­tors, we are ex­pect­ing a bet­ter year in 2014,” said Asthana.

Ac­cord­ing to Asthana, Goods and Ser­vice Tax (GST) will act as a driver to growth of lo­gis­tics and ware­hous­ing. And, ware­hous­ing is fast emerg­ing as a sep­a­rate busi­ness ver­ti­cal. Agri-lo­gis­tics will gain more im­por­tance, spe­cially in en­sur­ing food se­cu­rity in the coun­try.

Mech­a­ni­sa­tion of cargo-han­dling pro­cesses and fill­ing up the skill gaps are the ma­jor chal­lenges at present. He also ob­served that in­dus­trial ware­hous­ing shall be grow­ing in 2014. FDI in re­tails sec­tor would push the de­mand fur­ther for ef­fi­cient lo­gis­tics and ware­hous­ing fur­ther.

Re­mark­ably, CRWC has also de­cided to op­er­ate full par­cel cargo trains by FY 201314 in as­so­ci­a­tion with In­dian Rail. Ini­tially the trains will be be­tween Delhi-Mum­bai, Delhi-Kolkata and Delh-Hy­der­abad. “Our main ob­jec­tive is to di­vert road freight to rail in the long-term for ben­e­fit to the end-user, as well as the traders in or­der to con­trib­ute sub­stan­tially to the over­all econ­omy of the coun­try,” said Asthana. How­ever, to run the trains, CRWC will have tie-ups with trans­port and lo­gis­tics com­pa­nies in In­dia.

Re­cently the com­pany also signed an agree­ment with In­land Wa­ter­ways Author­ity of In­dia (IWAI) for de­vel­op­ing a Multi-Mo­dal Lo­gis­tics Hub (MMLH) at Jogighopa, As­sam, on Brahma­pu­tra river, to fa­cil­i­tate in­land ves­sel move­ment on Na­tional Wa­ter­ways. The MMLH will be jointly de­vel­oped by both par­ties.

Asthana in­formed that in the days to come the com­pany’s pri­mary fo­cus will be to de­velop cold chain and lo­gis­tics parks. Mean­while, its cold stor­age at Dankuni in West Ben­gal with 16 cham­bers, is all set to be op­er­a­tional by De­cem­ber 2014.

The Mini Ratna sta­tus would pro­vide more power to the or­gan­i­sa­tion for pol­icy mat­ter. CRWC is now pre­par­ing a prag­matic strat­egy based on a KPMG Re­port, com­mis­sioned by the com­pany.

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