Dubai – MENA Herald: The Dubai Multimodal Transportation and Logistics Cluster Platform, a novel initiative pioneered by the Department of Economic Development (DED) in 2011 to enhance ease of doing business and expedite movement of trade through Dubai, won the ‘Idea of the Year International Award’ in the Customer Focus category at the 29th International Ideas UK Conference, which concluded recently in Harrogate, UK.

The conference brought together professionals and innovators from all over the world to promote sharing of transformational ideas and winning solutions under the theme of ‘Journey of an Idea: Concept to Reality.’ Organisations and their initiatives were shortlisted for awards in 12 categories, including ‘Customer Focus,’ ‘Sustainability,’ ‘Innovation,’ ‘Corporate Social Responsibility’ and ‘Health & Safety.’

A collaborative network of companies in the logistics and related sectors as well as government agencies and industry associations, the Dubai Multimodal Transportation and Logistics cluster Platform combines the air, sea and road transport infrastructure and services in Dubai to facilitate cargo movement. The Ideas UK award recognised its success in addressing multi-dimensional challenges in a concerted manner and enhancing customer convenience and competitiveness.

His Excellency Sami Al Qamzi, Director General of DED said the Ideas UK award is a due recognition for Dubai’s focus on consolidating its advantages as one of the very few locations in the world that has strong sea as well as air cargo services, varied transport modes and world-class infrastructure.

“The Dubai Multimodal Transportation and Logistics Cluster Platform was the successful culmination of our efforts to convince competing businesses and government departments to collaborate for improved efficiency, both for themselves and for their customers. Today, the platform is instrumental in cementing Dubai’s position as a regional and global logistics hub and improving customer satisfaction as envisioned by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum,  UAE Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai,” Al Qamzi said.

“The Cluster Platform is an innovation generator where new and innovative ideas are constantly being created and tested in the area of global trade and logistics. With the Cluster Platform we set the new rules of the game in local and global markets. The Cluster Platform is an ongoing initiative and we believe we will reach new heights and set new benchmarking standards in global public policy and innovation landscape,” Al Qamzi added.

“The Dubai Multimodal Logistics Platform has had a multidimensional impact on the economy through a co-ordinated and integrated approach to infrastructure, policy, regulatory and operational issues. It has created a virtual corridor, supported by Dubai Customs and a number of other agencies and businesses, for faster cargo movement through linking service providers on a technology platform with tangible benefits,” said Ali Ibrahim, Deputy Director General of DED.

Preliminary estimates show that the total savings in time and cost due to the elimination of manual processes and the need for personal supervision as a result of the cluster platform is approximately 500,000 to 800,000 dirhams and up to 80 hours per company per month. The initiative is expected to assume special significance with Expo 2020 drawing closer and further enhance the position of Dubai and the UAE on the global trade map.

“The impact of the Cluster Platform goes all the way to each individual company operating in trade and logistics. The core of this innovative policy approach is that every single problem at a company or country level in local and international markets are interconnected and multidimensional in their nature. The outcome of the Cluster Platform is a win-win situation for all competing parties in Dubai,” said Gayane Afrikian, Senior Economic Policy Adviser in DED.