This document takes a look at the important role transport facilitation plays in regional development and considers the implications of adopting the Rotterdam Rules for the transport sector. It also provides a summary of the background and findings of a seminar, which was organized jointly by the Andrés Bello University's College of Maritime Interests and the Infrastructure Services Unit of the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), to analyse the specific case for Chile.
Transport and logistics play a pivotal role in the competitiveness of globalized economies. According to official figures, transport and logistics services in Latin America and the Caribbean generate approximately 10% of GDP and account for the direct creation of between 5% and 9% of all jobs. Despite its importance, in Latin America public policies and corporate business plans often fail to place logistics at the centre of national and corporate competitiveness policy. Latin America’s relative lag in developing competitive transport and logistics infrastructure and services is exacerbated by persistent traditional facilitation problems (both trade and transport facilitation). These problems are responsible for significant cost overruns, measured both in terms of time and money, which significantly hinder the competitiveness of exports and increase the prices domestic consumers must pay for products. Therefore, it is essential that institutional barriers that significantly impair facilitation of domestic logistical chains and hinder future regional development be quickly identified and removed.
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