FFFAI Chairman Mr Shankar Shinde and Immediate Past Chairman Mr AV Vijayakumar lighting the inauguration lamp of the Foundation Day celebration. Also present on the daisare Chairman Elect Mr Dushyant Mulani; Vice Chairmen Mr Amit Kamat, Mr S. Nataraja & Mr Sudeep Dey and Hony Secretary Mr Vinod Sharma.

The Federation of Freight Forwarders’ Associations in India (FFFAI) Chairman Mr Shankar Shinde conveys his sincere thanks to all the 28 Member Associations and more than 6500 members of FFFAI from across the country for their active contribution and support to the 60 years’ journey of the Federation. He also conveys his gratitude to other trade associations, chambers of commerce, logistics industry stakeholders, Customs Authority and different Ministries of the Government of India for their kind support to FFFAI during the last 60 years. FFFAI completed 60 years of its inception on December 2, 2022. This year the Foundation Day celebration programme was organised in Mumbai. The Federation will organise the Diamond Jubilee celebration programme early 2023.

“It is a proud privilege for me to thank you all on the occasion of celebrating the Foundation Day of FFFAI on December 2, 2022, completing the 60 years of its inception. At the Outset let me take this opportunity once again to congratulate each member and leaders of FFFAI for being part of this 60 years successful journey,” he said.

Speaking on the occasion in presence of other OBs and EC members attended the event from across the country Mr Shinde said that FFFAI is now well recognised by the government of India as well as the society at large as a vital entity of the end-to-end logistics/supply chain industry. “Our collective wisdom, hard work and strong organisational strength of FFFAI supported by 28 Member Associations from across India have been the key forces behind the recognition through various initiatives, policy announcements, and of late, by the National Logistics Policy announced by the Government of India,” he said.

He also underscored the contribution of past leaders of FFFAI in strengthening the Federation. “I take this opportunity to convey our sincere gratitude and homage to all the past leaders of FFFAI, many of whom left us for their heavenly abode. Presently we are standing on a solid ground as our leaders have built strong pillars in institutionalising the Federation to achieve greater heights,” the FFFAI chairman added.

He pointed out that taking cue from the predecessors the present leadership of FFFAI is constantly monitoring and analysing the entire ecosystem of the logistics industry in consultation with domain experts. “Accordingly, at present our focus is to up skill the domain knowledge with effective utilisation of emerging technologies. Our training arm IIFF is leaving no stone unturned in this regard. In addition, FFFAI has strengthened its Women and Youth Wings to woo women and young entrepreneurs to this highly potential and vibrant sector,” he added..

At the same time, FFFAI is in constant dialogue with the Government, other Trade Associations/Chambers of Commerce and logistics industry stakeholders for creating a collective force for this sunrise sector.

Mr Shinde further pointed out that in pursuance of its aims and objectives, the FFFAI plays a constructive role in maintaining a constant rapport with the Customs, Port Trusts, Airport Authorities, Container Corporation of India (CONCOR), Central Warehousing Corporation, Central Excise, Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT), etc. to make its own contribution in the formulation of Policy and administrative measures and simplification of various procedures. For this constructive role, the Federation has been accorded official recognition and is represented on several official, semi-official forums of various central ministries like Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways, Ministry of Commerce, Ministry of Civil Aviation and other Trade Bodies.

Being a national apex body of Custom Brokers, FFFAI is being invited by the Ministry of Finance to give presentation on the Union pre-budget for formulating the policy structure in direct and indirect tax. FFFAI comments are invited for the SCOPE Session, CCG meeting held by the Ministry of Commerce & Industry and Directorate General of Export Promotion. FFFAI is only logistic association to be part of the National Committee on Trade Facilitation which is chaired by Cabinet Secretary.

FFFAI was entrusted with execution of INSTC Project by Ministry of Commerce & Industry, and TIR Convention project through Ministry of External Affairs which was very successful.

FFFAI launched its own training and education wing in the name of Indian Institute of Freight Forwarders (IIFF) on 7th January, 2005 by the hands of Mr. Issa Baluch – President of FIATA and Mr. P. K. Srivastava – then CMD of Shipping Corporation of India. IIFF is the only institute in SAARC region to conducts Diploma course in Freight Forwarding which is approved by FIATA.

FFFAI has also strengthened its international networking and intervention in different international issues through IFCBA (International Federation of Customs Brokers Associations) and FIATA (International Federation of Freight Forwarders). FFFAI’s outreach holding important positions provided its members an opportunity to expand their horizon with support from these International associations.

“It is evident from facts and pertinent to highlight that the recognition to FFFAI comes from the business integrity and working together with Customs department, Government of India as partners in facilitating EXIM trade. This creates a greater sense of responsibility to the Nation and Fraternity we belong to for an opportunity to serve through FFFAI Platform,” Mr Shinde pointed out.

The FFFAI Chairman appreciated the support from CBIC Team for their continued proactive initiatives to keep the logistics wheel movement through contactless, paperless online initiatives which helped a lot, the transformation from manual to digital was commendable and in true spirit of facilitation measures.

Mr Shinde highly appreciated the recent initiatives of the Government of India viz CBLMS, ‘PM Gati Shakti’, ‘LEADS Report’, LPPT, ‘Faceless Assessment’, ‘Turant Customs’, ‘SWIFT’, ‘DPD’, AEO, etc aiming towards fast cargo clearance, Ease of Doing Business and improvement of Logistics Performance Index of the country as per world standard.

Sharing details on the Diamond Jubilee celebration of the Association the FFFAI Chairman informed the event will be held during early 2023. Detailed programmes would be intimated very soon, which would be a fascinating one. “On behalf of the Office Bearers and Executive Members of FFFAI I appeal to all FFFAI members to make serious efforts to make the Diamond Jubilee a historic event and FFFAI a force to be reckoned with. I also appeal to all to further strengthen the Federation by increasing its membership for the larger interest of the ex-im trade as well as logistics industry in the country,” Mr Shinde concluded.