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					         Role of freight forwarders increasingly important
                                                                       “I’m happy with the initiative of publishing
                                                                                  a special magazine about freight                                                                                          take over a directing role in the logistic chain.
                                                                  forwarders. There are still too many people and                                                                                           However, that didn’t happen, because the subject
                                                                        companies who do not know exactly what                                                                                              matter became more complicated due to regulations
                                                                                                                                                                                                            and specializations. This is why one sees that ship
                                                                                                    ,
                                                                           a freight forwarder does” says Liesbeth
                                                                                                                                                                                                            agents have gone back to their core business,
                                                                    Slappendel, managing director of FENEX. The                                                                                             representing ship owners, and that the freight
                                                                     association of freight forwarders and logistic                                                                                         forwarder, or rather the logistic service provider, is in
                                                                      service providers has been representing the                                                                                           control of the chain. In the area of harbours, ship
                                                                   interests of Dutch companies in this sector for                                                                                          agents directed the chain to about 60 to 70 per cent
                                                                      more than 100 years. It currently represents                                                                                          six years ago. We call that carrier haulage. Now the
                                                                     400 companies from very large ones to very                                                                                             same percentage is in the hands of merchant haulage
                                                                                                                                                                                                            – the freight forwarder.”
                                                                                                        small ones.
                                                                                                                                                                                                            This complexity is also related to the greatly changed
       Liesbeth Slappendel                                                                                                                                                        Raymond Riemen
                                                                                                                                                                                                            production processes. Increasingly, products are
                                                                                                                                                                                                            manufactured from components that are
                             The aim of the organization is to strengthen the         only become a member after being active for at least a    with the Shipping and Transport College (STC) in            manufactured in different parts of the world. For
                             position of freight forwarders and logistic service      year and requires the support of three existing           Rotterdam, but we keep a sharp watch on the                 example, one component may come from Asia, while
                             providers in the Netherlands. It does this in many       members.”                                                 contents.”                                                  another comes from Eastern Europe. This not only
                             different ways. Because the sector has to deal with      If a company wants to become a member, it must            FENEX has existed in its current form since 1991.           requires organization, but also knowledge of issues
                             many different rules and regulations, lobbying the       prove that its operations are in good order, among        Before, the sector was rather fragmented with               such as customs formalities. “We all know that
                             government is very important. Internationally, this is   other things by providing an auditor’s certificate.       organizations in different harbours and different           manufacturers place great value on just-in-time
                             done by CLECAT in Brussels (see elsewhere in this        Someone also visits the prospective member and            sectors. FENEX now bundles the entire sector. In            management. This is actually the actual job of the
                             magazine) and the worldwide organization FIATA. At       reports his or her findings to the executive committee.   2004, the cooperation was with Air Cargo Netherlands        logistic service provider – ensuring that the right
                             a national level, ministries and members of parliament   If the report is positive, an announcement will be        (ACN) was strengthened with the setting up of a joint       goods get delivered at the right time at the right place.”
                             in The Hague are important targets.                      published in the members’ newsletter. Existing            council for air cargo logistics. The fact that FENEX        These developments do not necessarily mean that the
                             To bundle forces, the Alliance for Logistics has been    members can object to the membership, based, of           celebrated its centennial in 2000 despite this can be       sector will soon be dominated by large global
                             founded. Ten organizations that play a role in the       course, on clear arguments.                               attributed to the ‘founding fathers’, the foundation of     companies. “There is always room for small
                             logistic chain work together through this alliance.      Why the strict membership procedures? One                 freight forwarders in Rotterdam.                            companies that manage to find market niches or that
                             Participants include Transport en Logistiek Nederland    important reason is that FENEX freight forwarders are     To prepare for the policy and to advise the executive       meet the needs of small and medium-sized companies,
                             (TLN), Koninklijk Nederlands Vervoer (KNV) and           guarantors for each other. To underline the reliability   committee about specific issues, the association has        which still make up a large share of our members”,
                             Deltalinqs. “The bundling of forces is important,        of FENEX freight forwarders, the organization has set     separate committees for seaport logistics, warehousing      Liesbeth Slappendel emphasized.
                             because one sees again and again that politicians are    up a guarantee fund. If one of the members should go      and distribution logistics, customs logistics and
                             not adequately aware of the enormous importance of       bankrupt, the fund will – under certain conditions –      airfreight logistics. Additionally, there are a number of   In view of the complexity of the subject matter in
                             the logistic sector for the Dutch economy”, says         cover the possible financial loss of clients. Partly      committees for issues such as finance, legal matters        particular, members are glad to use FENEX’s services.
                             Liesbeth Slappendel.                                     because of the strict admission requirements, this does   and training courses. As is customary for an                “We have a lot of knowledge here in the field of legal
                                                                                      not occur often.                                          association, the members have the final say at FENEX.       questions and customs affairs. We also know our
                             Membership The large majority of freight                                                                                                                                       members, so we can call on their knowledge of specific
                             forwarders / logistic service providers in the           Training courses In order to ensure quality               Future Chairman of the executive committee,                 areas. We also maintain international contacts. We
                             Netherlands belong to FENEX. Membership requires         among the members, FENEX also devotes a lot of            Raymond Riemen is very optimistic about the future          signal developments and inform our members about
                             more than a letter or a telephone call, explains         attention to training courses. “It’s more than just a     of the sector. As CEO of the Broekman Group, which          them. Our members are the main means of
                             Raymond Riemen, chairman of the executive                short course”, says Raymond Riemen. “It’s about a         bundles ship agents and general logistic service            implementing our policies”, summarized the
                             committee. “We place great value on the quality of       solid course in which theory and practice are dealt       providers, he has a good picture of the developments.       chairman, Raymond Riemen.
                             the services. According to the rules, a company can      with in turn. We provide the courses in cooperation       “Not so long ago, it looked like the ship agents would




4 In   the Spotlight 2007                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2007 In the Spotlight   5

				
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