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Experts Gather in Johannesburg to Combat Rising Cargo Crime in South Africa’s Supply Chains



Rising Cargo Crime in South Africa's Supply Chains

Manufacturers, shippers, and freight and logistics providers are set to convene in Johannesburg on March 7th 2023, to discuss the rise in cargo crime in South Africa, as reported by Cassint. The conference will be hosted by the Transported Asset Protection Association’s Europe, Middle East & Africa (EMEA) region. It will focus on how to mitigate cargo crime, which currently costs South African businesses tens of millions of euros in product losses. The latest Cargo Crime 18-Month Report by TAPA EMEA Intelligence System recorded 2,670 cargo thefts in South Africa across all nine provinces, which included 2,236 truck hijackings as well as several attacks on freight facilities.

The report indicates that the total loss figure stands at €31.7 million ($35.9 million) or R577 million Rand, and this figure is based only on 3.4% of recorded crimes sharing their actual financial losses.

The association says that the average loss for significant incidents involving goods worth over €100,000 ($113,000) stood at €947,862 per crime (18.3m Rand). This conference will bring together the TAPA EMEA’s leadership team with senior representatives from the South African Police Service (SAPS), Business Leadership South Africa (BLSA), DHL Express, Rhenus Logistics, TITAN Aviation Group, TCG Digital Forensics, and the International Platinum Group Metals Association. The event will discuss the impact of cargo crime on South Africa’s businesses and economy and offer advice on some of the solutions available to mitigate these risks.

Thorsten Neumann, President & CEO of TAPA EMEA, said that the conference aims to help all supply chain stakeholders understand the level of cargo crime taking place across South Africa and to offer intelligence and solutions to increase their supply chain resilience and prevent losses.

He added that high-value losses impact customer relationships, damage reputations, and can lead to rising costs, such as higher insurance premiums. “TAPA EMEA has this insight. We also have effective supply chain security standards that can protect facilities and trucking operations, and we are confident that these can contribute significantly to preventing losses and protecting employees from the types of attacks we are recording,” Neumann said.


In the report, TAPA EMEA shared examples of some of the thefts reported to its incident database over its latest 18-month analysis period. These included €5.9 million ($6.7 million) of clothing and footwear stolen from an Origin Facility in Durban, €5.5 million ($6.2 million) of cobalt hydroxide taken from a warehouse facility in Gauteng province and €4.7 million ($5.3 million) of car parts en route in Eastern Cape. The list also includes liquor, copper, fuel, and groceries.

According to the SAPS, there was a 9.8% year-over-year increase in truck hijackings in Q4 2022, with a total of 492 incidents over the 92-day period. The situation is dire and calls for urgent action to be taken to mitigate the risks of cargo crime in South Africa.

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