MAKATI CITY — The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) welcomed on 21 April 2023 the World Bank report which reflected a significant improvement in the Philippines’ global ranking in the 2023 Logistics Performance Index (LPI). The survey was conducted from September 6 to November 5, 2022 and included 4090 assessments of 139 countries. From a middle third position at 60th spot among 160 economies in 2018, the country now ranks 43rd, or top third among 139 economies included in the latest report.   

The Philippines registered higher scores in five out of six (5 out of 6) components measured by the World Bank such as: (a) efficiency of customs and border management clearance, (b) quality of trade and transport infrastructure, (c) competence and quality of logistics services, (d) ability to track and trace consignments; and (e) frequency of on-time deliveries.  The country, however, scored lower on the ease of arranging competitively priced international shipments, which the Philippine government is currently working on through inter-agency initiatives.  

Trade and Industry Secretary Fred Pascual said, “The Philippines’ significant improvement in terms of logistics performance is a testament of the joint efforts being done by the government in collaboration with the private sector to address supply chain challenges, reduce cost, improve timeliness and ensure reliability of shipments.”   

As part of the Department’s commitment to improve the country’s logistics sector, the DTI together with the Department of Transportation (DOTr) pursued in 2018 The Ten Commitments—a blueprint formulated in collaboration with the private sector through the Logistics Services Philippines (LSPH). The Philippines is now realizing the goals of this initiative, four years later. Further, to address low scores recorded on international shipments, the DTI supports the enactment of the proposed International Maritime Competitiveness Act that will help reduce international shipping charges. 

From an LPI score of 2.86 in 2018 to 3.3, the World Bank report has identified the Philippines as one of the Top 13 Lower Middle Income LPI scorers in 2023.  From 6th among ASEAN countries in 2018, the Philippines now ranks 4th ahead of Indonesia, Cambodia, and Lao PDR.  

According to the World Bank report, “improving logistics performance requires countries to consider it as a cross-cutting policy area, as the work crosses the administrative boundaries of transportation, commerce infrastructure, industry, finance, social issues and the environment.”  The World Bank emphasizes that this requires mechanisms that involve the private sector and the ability to absorb best practices from high performing countries.   

“With strong engagement by the private sector, government is formulating a National Logistics Strategy and a National Logistics Investment Plan in collaboration with Logistics Services Philippines. As an archipelago, we face greater challenges. Thus, building more infrastructure is critical to make logistics in the country more efficient,” added Secretary Pascual. 

The NLS shall focus on digital transformation, investments in logistics, policy and regulatory reform, ease of doing business, and skills and workforce development.  Reducing logistics cost and making the supply chain more efficient is also one of the top priorities of the DTI. ♦

Date of release: 25 April 2023