Last minute efforts made to appease carmakers
Talks between trade ministers from the US and South Korea continued this week as the countries try to resolve issues raised by US carmakers ahead of Thursday’s proposed approval of the free trade agreement between the two countries.
Both hope to reach an agreement before president Barack Obama meets South Korean president Lee Myung-bak at the G20 summit on November 11th and 12th.
South Korean minister for trade Kim Jong-hoon and US trade representative Ron Kirk met again today to deal with concerns that the deal does not do enough to ensure access to South Korea's auto market for US manufacturers. The trade deal was signed in April 2007 but has lain inert ever since.
The agreement could be the US’s largest trade pact since the North America Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) in 1994 and is lauded as being a support for Obama’s pledge in March this year to double American exports in five years. However, labour opposition and fears that the removal of tariffs could damage light truck production in the US and lead to an unbalanced influx of more Korean models have hampered progress on ratification.
BLG Logistics brings GPS system to Bremerhaven
BLG Logistics is phasing in a pilot yard management project at the German port of Bremerhaven that employs EPC Gen 2 passive RFID tags and GPS technology to track the locations of rolltrailers used for high and heavy equipment at the terminal.
The tracking system has been jointly developed with the Bremer Institute for Production and Logistics (BIBA) and was launched in 2008. Currently the partners are running tests on one reader and 10 RFID tags, with plans to commence a pilot in early 2011, once the proprietary software is fully developed.
Up to1,000 rolltrailers are used at the terminal and stored in a 3km2 yard. Each year BLG handles up to 60,000 rolltrailers that move into and out of the port.
Gefco pushes up PSA profits
PSA Peugeot Citroën has shown an overall revenue increase of 10.3% in Q3 compared with the same period in 2009, with automotive income up 2.3% to just under €9.5m ($13m) and a growth of more than 13% in the company’s wholly-owned logistics subsidiary Gefco.
Gefco recorded turnover of €2.5m ($3.4m) in the first nine months of 2010, an increase of 19.7% compared to the same period in 2009. Market gains in the different industrial sectors that Gefco operates in and the success in emerging markets, including Russia and Central and Eastern Europe were key drivers behind the growth.
Dongfeng doubles exports and looks at production abroad
China's Dongfeng Motor is considering the set up of commercial vehicle production bases abroad as its subsidiary – Dongfeng Commercial Vehicle Company – increases vehicle exports. The company expects to export more than 6,500 vehicles this year, an increase of over 200% from last year.
Dongfeng Motor has already built plants in Iran and Malaysia for knockdown kit assembly and is currently doing preliminary market research in Turkey and South Africa.
Dongfeng Commercial Vehicle posted a 74% year-on-year growth in auto sales to 233,000 units over the first three quarters of this year and saw sales of its medium and heavy-duty trucks jump 82% from a year earlier to 195,000 units.