London Gateway Expected to Cut Supply Chain Time

June 21, 2013
Close proximity to manufacturing and consumer markets is key, attendees of the 11th annual 3PL Summit and Chief Supply Chain Officer Forum are told.

DP World's London Gateway, the U.K.’s new deep-sea port and Europe’s largest logistics park opening in Q4 this year, will offer U.S. exporters, importers and forwarders trading with the U.K. an opportunity to protect and grow market share in the face of stiffening competition from emerging markets, according to Peter Ward, the port’s supply chain commercial manager.

Speaking at the 11th annual 3PL Summit and Chief Supply Chain Officer Forum in Chicago this week, Ward said the opening of London Gateway will prove ports add value to the supply chain.

“London Gateway is overturning the traditional view that ports add cost,” he said. “We are reversing the trend—shortening supply chain time, distance and cost because our port is closer to the main manufacturing and consumer markets. Our state of the art terminal will deliver new levels of efficiency, enabling greater supply chain reliability and predictability.”

London Gateway, 25 miles from central London on the River Thames, is due to open later this year and the team is currently making a series of presentations in the United States to showcase the benefits of both the port and the adjacent logistics park.

Last week retailer Marks & Spencer announced plans to build a major distribution centre at London Gateway’s logistics park. Alan Stewart, CFO, Marks & Spencer, said: “We will reduce the lead times between goods landing in the U.K. and getting into our stores, in front of our customers, from about three weeks to three days.”

A spokesman for a global forwarder remarked that “As ports around the world move further away from manufacturing and consumer markets in search of deeper water for bigger ships, London Gateway is mitigating longer supply chains by locating the port and logistics park closer to the U.K.’s main markets.”

The Chicago forum, organized by EyeforTransport, attracted 575 delegates.  

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