In a bid to help companies digitise their processes, technology company Cisco has tied up with some of the largest Indian seaports and inland waterways, including Visakhapatnam, Deendayal, Kolkata Port and IWAI (Inland Waterways Authority of India).

The company is currently working on 14 projects across seven ports in India, of which three projects have been completed, and 11 are in various stages. This partnership is in line with India’s Maritime Vision 2030, which hinges on boosting productivity and performance of nation’s maritime sector over the next decade.

The need to digitise Indian ports comes at a time when the country is looking at bringing down the overall cost of logistics to below 10 per cent of GDP, in order to boost competitiveness in terms of global competition.

The cost of logistics to GDP for some of the biggest economies in the world like US and Europe is at about 8 per cent and 9 per cent, respectively, as found in sources. Against this, the cost is much higher in India at 13 per cent of GDP.

The digitisation of Indian ports will be crucial in cutting down the overall logistics cost while boosting the country’s competitiveness to transform it into a global manufacturing powerhouse.

Cisco’s initiative to digitise ports and waterways focuses on four areas. The first is to improve turnaround time, which will directly impact the capacity and revenue. Preventing loss of revenue and equipment failure through real-time equipment monitoring is another focus area.

Cisco also plans to help improve efficiency through energy management and analytics. Besides, it is also working on increasing employee safety and communications through a multi-channel communication and collaborative platform.

“India has a goal to be a manufacturing powerhouse. To get there, they need efficient logistics. We’re partnering with some of India’s largest ports to improve turnover times, to prevent loss of revenue and equipment failures through real-time monitoring, increase efficiency through energy management, logistics, and improving employee communications and safety.”
~Dave West, President for Asia Pacific, Japan, and Greater China (APJC) at Cisco

“This will help India move closer to its goal to be a $5 trillion economy by 2025. I know this crisis (COVID-19) has caused a lot of pain. But at the same time, it really has us rethinking what the future will look like. And we can continue to play our part to help our customers leapfrog in this region,” West added.