Dangerous goods fears resurface as marine insurers gather

As The International Union of Marine Insurers  (IUMI) annual conference opened today in Edinburgh there are new warnings over the threat to the global supply chain from the transport of dangerous goods.

Hot on the heels of IUMI’s report on the transport of electric vehicles, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) Labelmaster, and Hazardous Cargo Bulletin t announced the results of their eighth annual 2023 Global Dangerous Goods Confidence Outlook.

IATA said the results highlighted the need to reduce process complexity, establish effective staff recruitment and retention programs, and enhance digitalization to facilitate the safe and compliant transport of dangerous goods (DG) / hazardous materials (hazmat).

“Ongoing supply chain disruptions along with the continued growth of e-commerce and markets that rely on DG – from consumer products to electric vehicles – has made shipping goods safely and compliantly increasingly difficult. While organizations showed improvement in their DG operations over the last year, the survey underscored the need to reduce process complexity and enhance digitalization to address future supply chain and regulatory challenges,” said Robert Finn, vice president, Labelmaster.

“Confidence among DG professionals is high, yet challenges remain. These include process complexity, the mis-declaration of DG and the recruitment of skilled personnel. To meet the future growth in DG shipments, we need well-trained professionals following globally agreed standards and supported by the right technology and infrastructure,” added Nick Careen, IATA’s senior vice president of operations, safety, and security.

The survey found 56% of dangerous goods professionals believe their current infrastructure meets existing needs, with only 28% believing that it meets both current and future needs.

However process complexity, mis-declared dangerous cargos and attracting qualified staff remain challenging.
Of those questioned 72% said they need more support to address future dangerous goods compliance. Looking to the future 56% said they expect the mis-declaration of dangerous goods to stay the same or worsen.

Finn added, “While DG professionals are generally optimistic about the future, the survey shows improvements to processes are needed to adapt to supply chain and regulatory changes. The good news is there are plenty of tools available that will help organizations address current and future needs and keep regulated goods moving safely, compliantly, and efficiently.”

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