Name of the project: SHARED FREIGHT TRANSPORT SERVICES CONNECTING SHIPPER AND CARRIER OPERATIONS
Acronym of the project: SCOPE
Duration: 24 months (09.09.2019 – 08.09.2021)
PROGRAMME rationale: Priority Axes 1: Entrepreneurship & Innovation
Thematic Objective 3: Enhancing the competitiveness of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs)
Specific Objective 1.1 Competitive territories I.P. 3a Promoting entrepreneurship, in particular by facilitating the economic exploitation of new ideas and fostering the creation of new firms, including through business incubators
Lead Partner: Centre for Research and Technology Hellas-Hellenic Institute of Transport (GR)
- Aristotle University of Thessaloniki – Special Account for Research Funds-Department of Civil Engineering (GR)
- Professionals’ Chamber of Thessaloniki (GR)
- Bulgarian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BG)
- Regional Industrial Association – Smolyan (BG)
- Smolyan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BG)
- Chamber of Commerce and Industry Tirana (AL)
- Ministry of Infrastructure and Energy (AL)
Project Description: An efficient freight transport system is essential for supporting regional economic growth and competitiveness and plays an important role in productivity and the social welfare of the Balkan-Med region’s countries. In the region, road transport is the predominant mode for moving goods, comprising a vital link between people, products and services. Road transport accounts for 97% of total inland freight transport in Greece and Albania and 75% in Bulgaria. Recent political stability and the improvement of living standards have reactivated the commercial market between Balkan countries and reinforced trade with Europe. To this end, there is a pressing need to address current inefficiencies and improve the performance of the trucking sector which still faces challenges regarding productivity, capacity utilization (e.g. 60% of trucks return empty) and environmental sustainability, resource use mismatch and lack of coordination and fragmentation of activities. Heavy administrative procedures hinder seamless freight transport flows, especially between EU and non-EU Balkan countries, highlighting the need for adopting solutions that will provide efficient road freight transport services. Freight exchange platforms aim to address this need and provide, to their users, services of real added-value. Despite the wide adoption of such platforms in Europe, their deployment in the Balkan-Med region is still limited, only at a national level and not adequately addressing these challenges.
The active industry participation, the strong research capacity and the policy-making perspective, ensured by the composition of the SCOPE consortium, fully support the project’s overall objective to develop a market-driven product, tailor-made to the specific needs and requirements of relevant stakeholders in Greece, Bulgaria and Albania (i.e. long haul and last mile truck carriers and distributors, drayage operators, cargo shippers and receivers, transportation intermediaries), who represent the project’s main target groups.
WP 1 Project Management & Coordination;
WP 2 Project Communication & Dissemination;
WP 3 State-of-the-Art & Practice;
WP 4 System Requirements & High-level Architecture;
WP 5 Platform Development, Testing & Evaluation;
WP 6 Pilot Application & Sustainable Exploitation;
SCOPE will promote the development of strong transnational business links and collaborations between shippers and carriers from Greece, Bulgaria and Albania as well as from other Balkan-Med countries.
SCOPE will provide to the market a valuable tool to be utilized in day-to-day shipper and carrier operations providing significant benefits to its users for improving their performance, sustainability and territorial competitiveness thus enhancing the current business environment.
The SCOPE platform will provide to its users access to new markets and customers offering significant business opportunities.
Efficient road freight transport services offered by the platform are expected to provide significant capabilities especially for SMEs, supporting their viability in the sector.
Shippers will have better access to road freight transport services especially for LTL shipments which are often costly and not preferred by the carriers.
For carriers, the use of the platform may result in better fleet and vehicle capacity utilization, improved load and fuel efficiency, reduced empty trips, improved corporate image, reduced unproductive vehicle time, better advertising of their services, improved revenue stream.
The aforementioned efficiencies will also provide major environmental benefits improving the quality of life in the Balkan-Med region.
- A deep understanding of the current state-of-the-art and practice on freight exchange platforms
- The detailed assessment of local and transnational road freight transport conditions
- A platform tailor-made to the specific needs and requirements of several stakeholders
- A set of unique value-added services that meet user needs and requirements
- Pilot-run and evaluation of the platform and services
The project is co-funded by the European Union and by the National Funds of the participating countries.