Year in Review

Via the provision of a ‘Helpdesk’ function, BIFA continued to engage with its membership informally throughout 2022, whilst having more formal engagement via its main Policy Groups, the Regional Groups and the Young Forwarder Network.

In addition to the day-to-day work undertaken by the staff in BIFA’s Secretariat, the trade association recaps the activities of BIFA’s Air, Customs, Maritime, Road & Rail, and Legal & Insurance Policy Groups over the course of the year in this section of the Annual Report 2022.

The increased workload resulting from the UK leaving the EU continued to heap pressure on members, and the trade association did its utmost to help members address the challenges presented by the tough operating conditions, by providing advice and information about national and international supply chain issues that could assist members to develop processes that could help them to address those issues. 2022 was a very busy year for the Policy and Compliance Department as it was required to deal with challenges that came from many different angles, including recent events stemming from Brexit; ongoing issues such as the implementation of the Customs Declaration Service (CDS); as well as longer term future events such as development of the Single Trade Window (STW). One thing which should never be under-estimated is the extended length of time over which some of the work occurs. For instance, the Customs Declaration Service (CDS) which came to the fore in 2022, has been exercising BIFA’s attention for over nine years. The year saw more attention paid to long term future events such as the Single Trade Window (STW), and the thorny matter of the environment, which will affect all modes and activities.

The Policy Groups continued to assist with the delivery of guidance and direction for the Association and its Secretariat throughout the year, managed and administered by the Policy & Compliance team and the executive management of the Secretariat. The policy group chairs are responsible for reporting to the BIFA Council, and BIFA acknowledges and appreciates the time and effort put in by the members of each policy group on an entirely voluntary basis, making an important contribution to the trade association’s work in 2022. The engagement of regional consultants at the local level continued to take place via virtual and actual meetings. These enabled responses to member enquiries to be delivered as appropriate. At the same time those consultants were able to liaise with the BIFA Secretariat to obtain specialist assistance when necessary or request that the issue at hand was addressed and responded to by government, or other stakeholders. The year shaped-up to be very challenging for the freight forwarding sector, and BIFA’s membership had to continue to address generic issues, common to many sectors, such as shortages of experienced staff, as well as specific issues affecting the work of BIFA members managing global supply chains across all modes, such as ongoing inflated freight rates across all modes, and shortage of capacity in transport and warehousing.

During 2022, with the lifting of COVID-19 restrictions, there was a welcome return of face-to-face meetings with members, government departments and other organisations.



BIFA Annual Report & Accounts 2022 | bifa.org

bifa.org | BIFA Annual Report & Accounts 2022

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