Goyal said that efficient logistics was pivotal to bring ease and empowerment to businesses as well as citizens

Gujarat has maintained its lead over 20 other states by again getting top place on an index to gauge the logistics efficiency across states in 2021 due to its “well-developed infrastructure and services driven by a responsive government”, according to a report released by commerce and industry minister Piyush Goyal. It got the No. 1 rank in the 2019 index too.

Even as the state topped in indicators such as availability and quality of infrastructure, extent of facilitation and ease of obtaining all approvals, respondents to the survey that was conducted to construct the index complained that the potholes on road leading to Mundra port gets flooded and leads to congestion during the monsoon season and there is lack of connectivity between ports Mundra and Hazira via a coastal road.

On the other hand, Haryana has gained four places to come second in 2021 compared to the sixth spot in 2019, while Punjab lost one notch to get the third rank from the second two years back, showed the LEADS (logistics ease across different states) index.

The state has secured the highest score for several indicators such as quality of warehousing infrastructure, timeliness of cargo delivery during transportation, operating and regulatory environment, and efficiency of regulatory services, the report showed. But, it also suffered from various challenges such as bad condition of the road connecting major industrial areas in Panipat, Karnal, Jind and Rohtak. Besides, rail freight charges are high as compared to road freight charges when transporting rice from Sonipat, Panipat, and Taraori belts.  

Tamil Nadu came fourth in 2021 against fifth position in 2019, while Maharashtra slipped a place to figure in the fifth ranking against fourth released by commerce and industry minister Piyush Goyal.

In the first top five place, the opposition ruled states of Punjab and Maharashtra dropped one place each in 2021 compared to the rankings two year ago, while Tamil Nadu bettered its position.

Punjab’s proactive policies such as single window clearance mechanism for regulatory approvals, fiscal incentives under the industrial and business development policy, grievance redressal mechanism and development of warehousing zones have had an immense impact on the logistic ecosystem, according to the report. However, there were issues such as the participating government agencies (PGAs) involved in the certification do not have their testing facilities anywhere near Ludhiana. This results in samples being sent over to Delhi for necessary testing and certification for clearance of exports and imports, adding to the total transaction time.