The growth in international trade and its related freight distribution systems also requires the development of logistics capabilities, which are supported by both physical (infrastructures) and managerial assets. Globalization has imposed more complex, geographically dispersed and flexible supply chains requiring advanced logistics. Logistics involves a wide set of activities dedicated to the transformation and distribution of goods, from raw material sourcing to final market distribution as well as the related information flows. Logistics investments are therefore the allocation of capital to improve the efficiency of freight distribution through:
- Infrastructures, such as terminals, real estate and telecommunications;
- Operations, including transport modes and equipment, and;
- Human resources related to labor, management, governance as well as research and development.
The outcomes of investing in logistics capabilities are numerous, but mainly related to increased integration to global trade and supply chains, a better utilization of national transport assets, more competitive exports, lower costs for imports, as well as employment opportunities.