Luis Terán
Director General
Connect Logistics
View from the Top

Heavy Bureaucracy Remains a Barrier to Fast, Efficient Transport

Wed, 10/16/2019 - 17:38

Q: What is your principal operation and how do you stand out from your competitors?
A: We are a logistics company that works with transport operators to transport freight. You can see us as a freight forwarder. Our goal is to adapt our services as much as we can to the requirements of the client. We do not limit ourselves to one particular region and can organize transport over very large distances, subcontracting transport agencies along the way. We also organize the transfer of goods from one transport medium to another. We manage import procedures, working with customs agencies at borders and at seaports. We have agents at all ports and border terminals in Mexico. Our role is to act as the brain behind the transport operation.
To ensure the best solutions, we analyze routes and circumstances. Some of our clients, for instance, require the transport of dangerous materials. To ensure operators function at their best, we organize annual training courses for our transporters and logistical partners where we impart all the experience, we have gained over the last nine years.
Q: What measures do you take to mitigate security risks?
A: You cannot mitigate these risks completely because they are not in the hands of a single person or company. You have to act to prevent such situations and put in place the appropriate measures. First, you must have a complete overview of where the cargo will be every day, at every hour. In communication with your partners and client, you can then coordinate when a cargo is going to arrive in a particular area. Of course, there are areas that are more difficult and dangerous than others so you should try to provide advice to your clients regarding transport circumstances. Lastly, you monitor the transport along the way using GPS and look out for signs of potential danger by maintaining continuous contact with operators.
Q: Connect Logistics is known for detecting opportunities in the logistical chain. What are the most important elements?
A: One of the most important factors is to have units available at the moment they are needed. In the industries in which we operate, the majority of movements are urgent. You must, therefore, always be ready for a new client order. Another factor is the ability to bulk cargo in one transport. You want to put several clients’ cargo orders in the same transport operation to lessen the number of transports, and thus save costs and time. We can do these things. That distinguishes us from our competitors, and allows us to meet the demands of every mine in Mexico.
Q: What improvements would you recommend for port authorities in Mexico?
A: Our clients run tight time schedules, so a speedier offloading and clearance of containers is certainly desired. Ports are often limited by their capacity. Then there is the level of bureaucracy. The payment of import taxes complicates things and reduces the amount of time we have to meet our deadline. This does not necessarily concern the port, but all the different heads through which companies have to go for approval. It would help if these authorities had greater knowledge of the companies that ship goods through their ports.
Q: Have recent tensions regarding the US-Mexico border affected your business?
A: It has not affected us directly, but there are some impacts. Clients have become a bit more reluctant in their investments. The USMCA negotiations have created a lack of clarity in what is going to happen. Any blocks at the border have not slowed us down. The greater impact comes from the new regulations for operators in the US, such as a mandatory rest for truck drivers after an eight-hour shift. The regulations vary per US state. The result is that transport that previously took three days may now take between four and five days. These types of regulations may also be introduced in Mexico, but so far it remains unregulated.