About Logistics Centres
EUROPLATFORMS is the only European Association of Freight Villages and Logistics Centres. The organisation was established December 18th 1991 and has since worked in the field of transport and logistics. EUROPLATFORMS' main purpose is to promote and expand the concept of Logistics Centres in Europe and worldwide and to create and develop relations among existing Logistics Centres in Europe and with similar groupings internationally. As of December 2011 the members include around 70 Logistics Centres that manage Logistic Centres all over Europe, in which over 2.600 transport and logistics companies operates.
EUROPLATFORMS aims to be actively involved in development and implementation of transport and logistics centres in all European countries. The main objectives of EUROPLATFORMS are:
- To expand and promote the main idea and projects related to Logistics Centres in Europe;
- To create and develop added value relations among the existing Logistics Centres in EUROPE and with similar groupings outside Europe;
- To provide information concerning the Logistics Centres to EU, UNECE, OECD as well as to states, territorial communities, organisations and all connected businesses;
- To protect common interests related to the activities of its members;
- To promote, for itself and its members, the attainment of economic and financial aids for supporting sustainable transportation in the member centres;
- The study, adoption and the starting-up of initiatives, projects, activities or services, which could be of general interest for most of the associated Logistics Centres; and
- To contribute in the Pan-European and Cross-Mediterranean transport integration and partnership through the promotion and introduction of the Logistics Centre concept.
Logistics Centre definition
EUROPLATFORMS has throughout the years developed and improved the definition of Transport and Logistics Centres. The definition has been approved by EU, UNECE and OECD and widely approved and used by many national authorities.
Logistics Centre Definition:
A Logistics Centre is a centre in a defined area within which all activities relating to transport, logistics and the distribution of goods - both for national and international transit, are carried out by various operators on a commercial basis. The operators can either be owners or tenants of buildings and facilities (warehouses, distribution centres, storage areas, offices, truck services, etc.), which have been built here.
In order to comply with free competition rules, a Logistics Centre must be open to allow access to all companies involved in the activities set out above. A Logistics Centre must also be equipped with all facilities to carry out the mentioned operations. If possible, it should include public services for the staff and equipment for the users.
In order to encourage intermodal transport for the handling of goods, a Logistics Centre should preferably be served by a multiplicity of transport modes (road, rail, sea, inland waterway, air). To ensure synergy and commercial cooperation, it is important that a Logistics Centre is managed in a single and neutral legal body (preferably by a Public-Private-Partnership). Finally, a Logistics Centre must comply with European standards and quality performance to provide the framework for commercial and sustainable transport solutions.
This definition contains the main criteria which should be fulfilled in order to be certified and recognised as a Logistics Centres. In addition there are a number of elements which Logistics Centres are based upon. Three of the more important elements are described below.
- Territorial and infrastructure planning
- Transport quality and specialisation
- Intermodal development
1: Dedicating a specific area to transport, logistics and goods distribution automatically implies a standard quality in the physical planning of the area and rationalisation of the associated infrastructure. EUROPLATFORMS members are open to provide examples of how to optimize the Logistics Centre area planning to other members.
2: A high service quality is one of the most important means for ensuring an excellent level of both competitiveness and cooperation at the same time. The increase in freight transport between EU and Asia has increased the need for well-planned and efficient logistics solutions, which among others means removing bottlenecks and creating added value solutions in and between the Logistics Centres along the transport chains. EUROPLATFORMS members help and support each other with this activity.
3: Road transport is still the most common transport mode in Europe. Two of the most important goals for the Logistics Centres when it comes to intermodal transport development are to:
- Consolidate the goods flows along the transport chain (corridor)
- Offer convenient transport solutions using combinations of rail/short sea shipping and road, thus ensuring that the most efficient transport mode is used for the transport.
These three elements only symbolises a few of many elements and aspects to consider and plan for. EUROPLATFORMS experiences have shown a large number of elements and networking aspects.
Members of EUROPLATFORMS
Below is shown a map of the EUROPLATFORMS member countries. In countries like Germany and Poland EUROPLATFORMS are no longer present, but EUROPLATFORMS is always open for new members, as long as the Logistics Centres live up to the definition on page 3 and the criteria listed in section 1.3.1. In several countries EUROPLATFORMS is furthermore involved in development of new Logistics Centres. At present Sweden, Finland and Lithuanian centres are in the preliminary stage of being involved in the EUROPLATFORMS partnership and more country Logistics Centres organisation representatives are on their way to obtain membership.
Who can become member of EUROPLATFORMS
EUROPLATFORMS is a non-profit organisation meaning that the membership fee is solely going to EUROPLATFORMS activities, which creates added value for the EUROPLATFORMS members.
There are two possible ways to obtain membership of EUROPLATFORMS:
- Representatives of National Transport and Logistics Centre Associations
- A single centre can be obtained as member in EUROPLATFORMS if there is no Logistics Centre Association in the country in question.
For both ways to obtain membership there are some prerequisites that the centres have to live up to. These are the following:
- The Logistics Centre should be operational, meaning that it should be in function.
- The Logistics Centre should act as bridge builder to other Logistics Centres within the country
- The Logistics Centre should where possible facilitate the integration of EUROPLATFORMS ideas and concepts into its own infra- and suprastructure as well as in the national Logistics Centre planning.
EUROPLATFORMS organisation and management
EUROPLATFORMS is managed by a board of 12-13 operating managing directors from Logistics Centres around Europe, normally with a high competence and a long-lasting experience. Among the board members are appointed 3 members to an executive committee – a President, a 1st Vice-president (substitute to the President) and a 2nd Vice-president. The member of the “Presidency” – elected for 5 years – are responsible for executing EUROPLATFORMS policy, strategies and business activities and for representing EUROPLATFORMS in several high level fora, committees, meetings, etc in and outside Europe e.g. in EU, UNECE, OECD and financial institutions.
All of the board member are directly involved and engaged in meetings, conferences, discussion fora which concerns EUROPLATFORMS, National Logistics Centres Associations and individual Logistics Centre activities.
The direct involvement of managing directors with extensive business experience in transport and logistics environments adds high added value and have a strong impact on development of Logistics Centres in and outside Europe. The board activities are supported by a small secretariat and by staff at the individual board members Logistics Centres.
Benefits of a membership of EUROPLATFORMS
Why should your Logistics Centre be a part of the EUROPLATFORMS network? For this a number of reasons could be listed. In this paper we will focus on five main reasons, thus limiting the number to the reasons assessed to be of highest importance:
- Possibility for sharing experiences with other Transport and Logistics Centre operators.
- Learning and acquiring new knowledge about the latest development in the transport industry from other members working within the same field.
- Opportunity to participate in EU part-financed development projects focusing on testing, implementing and developing new sustainable transport solutions that can improve the Transport and Logistics Centres as well as the whole transport chain.
- Being an active partner in transport policy-making-processes and contribute to achieving real sustainable mobility in Europe
- Creates new business added value by networks of Logistics Centres and their logistics service providers
More information about EUROPLATFORMS can be obtained by contacting:
Vice-president of EUROPLATFORMS EEIG
Vestre Havnepromenade 5, 4th floor
P.O. Box 1111
Phone: +45 99 30 00 08
Fax: +45 99 30 00 07