Date
26 September 2017
China’s courier industry handles as many as 160 million parcels a day during peak periods. Photo: internet
China’s courier industry handles as many as 160 million parcels a day during peak periods. Photo: internet

Up next for Chinese couriers: Smarter, bigger operation

Whether e-commerce is doing more good than harm to China’s economy is hard to judge at this point.

While online shopping is booming, many retailers, big and small, are being pushed to downsize or cease business altogether.

But one thing is certain — courier companies are having a great time. Business volume reportedly grew more than 50 percent in the first half.

Since businesses are so good and the cost of labor is climbing, the sector is turning to robotics as a solution.

Some operators are experimenting with drones as a delivery method.

Some have designed their own sorting robots, aiming to automate the entire process from goods loading, to sorting, wrapping and sealing.

Overseas expansion is another trend in the industry.

Some players are offering courier services to overseas customers, setting up local networks primarily in Asian countries, either on their own or through tie-ups with local operators.

Others have invested in warehouses in popular markets of Chinese online shoppers like the US to eliminate the need for external providers and improve the control of the whole process.

An industry-wide expo will be held at the end of the month in Beijing where participants are expected to unveil their latest offerings and technology, according to Hong Kong Commercial Daily.

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RA

EJ Insight writer

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