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Policies to support logistics sector difficult to implement: executives

By Zhao Qian (Global Times)

09:15, August 09, 2012

The State Council has released long-awaited guidelines to boost the country's logistics sector, but industry insiders said the policies will be difficult to implement.

By 2020, the country will set up a modern logistics system which will apply technologies of the Internet of Things, cloud computing and mobile telecommunications, and will foster a number of professional logistics and transportation enterprises, according to the guidelines published on the central government's website Tuesday.

Supportive policies including relieving enterprises' tax burdens and reducing highway toll fees are highlights of the guidelines.

"After a decade of fast development, China's logistics industry is facing barriers to further growth including rising transportation costs and under-developed information technologies," Xu Shouzhen, secretary-general of the China Logistics Association, told the Global Times on Wednesday.

"These policies seem infusive, but I am afraid that they could not be well executed by the local governments," Yang Zhiping, chairman of Henan Changtong Logistics Co, told the Global Times.

"Even if part of the policies are put into practice, only the State-owned companies will benefit from them," Yang said.

"As a private company, we will get little benefit," the chairman said.

In the past decade, the social logistics volume witnessed an average annual growth of 22 percent, according to the China Federation of Logistics & Purchasing.

However, the logistics and transportation enterprises have been suffering from thin profit margins.

For a logistics company, fuel, maintenance fees and highway toll fees are major costs, but these fees are unlikely to decline, according to Yang.

Cases of illegal toll charges are not uncommon in China. "Truck drivers are always fined without any reasonable explanation by staff members of local highway companies," Yang noted.

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