Unlocking Opportunities: Interview with Tuan Nguyen on Project Logistics in Southeast Asia

We continue our series on the growth plans of Ahlers Logistics in Southeast Asia. In today’s interview Tuan Nguyen, Business Development Manager, shares insights on project logistics challenges and opportunities in the region.

Challenges & Opportunities

Could you outline your role in Ahlers’ expansion project?  

My primary responsibility is to oversee the implementation of Ahlers’ growth strategy in Vietnam and the neighbor regions with a focus on project logistics. This includes identifying new business opportunities in the booming segments like heavy machinery, industry, metallurgy and energy, and, of course, knowing the real pains of the customers. I also work on developing and maintaining relationships with key stakeholders and ensuring that our operations are aligned with the company’s expectations.

What challenges and opportunities for project logistics do you encounter in the local market?

Vietnam's infrastructure, particularly in terms of transportation networks and port facilities, can present challenges for large-scale project logistics. Limited road and rail connectivity and capacity constraints at ports can impact the efficiency of transporting heavy machinery and equipment. On top of that, navigating regulatory frameworks, customs procedures, and bureaucratic processes in Vietnam can be intricate and time-consuming, adding even more layers of complexity to the operations. However, these challenges are balanced by opportunities stemming from rapid industrialization, foreign investment influx, and growing demand for specialized services.  Ahlers brings decades of expertise in project logistics, with a proven track record of successfully executing complex projects globally. Our local team has an in-depth understanding of the Vietnamese market dynamics, while our local partner enables us to leverage resources and capabilities to deliver comprehensive and reliable solutions.

Future Growth

Could you share some recent successful projects in the region, and how these experiences inform your strategy for future growth?

Ahlers has recently opened a new office in Vietnam, signaling expansion of our operations in the region. Our team is heavily involved in green-steel projects (modernizing steel production technologies), and Southeast Asia is one of the most common origins from where this equipment usually comes from. For instance, in the last few months we have organized several transportations of equipment for steel mills in breakbulk, containers and direct trucks from several countries, including Thailand and Vietnam. We leverage our experience, resources, and partnerships to target other growing industries in the local project cargo sector. We are confident that our combined strengths with the local partner will enable us to build trust, collaboration, and ultimately, establish Ahlers Logistics as a preferred partner in the Southeast Asian market.

What measures do you take to ensure reduction of CO2 footprint handling and transporting project cargo?

No doubt, sustainable logistics solutions have gained prominence in the region, largely driven by the local government’s efforts in addressing environmental challenges. We prioritize that as well by supporting EPC companies' decarbonization strategies. We offer multi-modal transportation with alternative modes to reduce the CO2 footprint. Our approach integrates sustainable practices and optimizing routes to minimize fuel consumption. Another example is our in-house tool, which not only can be used for monitoring and reporting emissions, but also for optimization and route design work.