LOGISTICS GONE MAD, OR MANIPULATION

A few months back I ordered some goods from a German company, unfortunately with this bat virus causing chaos everywhere, the German company was waiting for suppliers to deliver goods to them. My order got put back several times, until finally two weeks ago, I received an email from the company stating my goods are ready to be shipped by DHL.

I was tracking the goods from the departure in Germany for a few days, then I saw my goods had arrived at the transit country. I was expecting the transit country to be Poland, imagine my surprise when I saw the transit country was Moskva. Of course this got me thinking, why the fuck would they use Muscovy as a transit country, when the logical route, and the cheapest, is through Poland? I might be wrong on this, but to my way of thinking, this has all to do with import/export figures. Are Muscovy and the Germans manipulating the figures to make it look like the Ukraine/Muscovy trade is more than it actually is.

Luckily for me, my goods have now left the Mafia state. I will be interested to know why my goods have taken this roundabout route, and will ask DHL when I pick them up from the local DHL distribution centre.

9 comments

  • “Are Muscovy and the Germans manipulating the figures to make it look like the Ukraine/Muscovy trade is more than it actually is.”
    Actually, I don’t trust either country. I wouldn’t be surprised at all if Germany cheats on its import-export numbers and its economy as a whole. It cheats in its unemployment numbers too, and its crime statistics are just as fake and so are its polls and many other “facts and figures”.
    Mafia land? The name says it all.

    Liked by 4 people

    • I don’t trust either country either, and seeing Ukraine are the one with the EU trade agreement, why involve Muscovy at all? If I was running a business, I’m sure I wouldn’t want the extra expense of sending goods an extra 1000km for no reason.

      Liked by 5 people

  • Well, I think it is just an algorithm that does that. Imagine a container with stuff mostly for Russians. If your package is somewhere on the bottom, it may be more efficient to take the container to Russia first, and on its way back to Poland.

    Of course, I wouldn’t like my stuff to be in this maffia state, but it is still possible that it was in fact very rational to go this route.

    I think parcel services are too complex for any human being to organise: it is just computers that calculate the most efficient option, which is often not s solution a human would have come up with.

    And honestly I doubt whether this will be included in the trade statistics: there were no transactions between the country of origin and Russia and also to Germany.

    I may only count in terms of tonnage, not dollars worth of trade.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Knut, maybe or maybe not.
      But, in my work, I must solve much more complex problems than deciding which flight to send a package on. There are flights daily between Germany and Ukraine. Also, there are numerous German logistics companies operating in Ukraine (Dachser, Emons, Transalex, BLG, ITC Logistik et al). If it truly is an algorithm making such decisions – sending parcels in such roundabout ways – the programmer(s) should pay compensation and get fired. Efficiency is important to every company and saving CO2 emissions should also be important.

      Liked by 3 people

  • I would agree with you, if these decisions are made on a package level.

    But there are several situations in which it is possible that this is a more optimal solution, or at least the fastest. Imagine if there is a direct flight between Germany and Ukraine, but that aircraft is fully loaded. To add another flight would mean as whole flight for just a few extra packages.

    Imagine there still is space on the flight to Russia, and also on a plane or truck from Russia to Ukraine. Then it would be more efficient to let it go to Russia first.

    I don’t know the exact details, but an algorithm makes these kind of decisions, with probably a focus on either speed or to fully load trucks and planes.

    If there really was a conspiracy to increase trade value, to make trade between Russia and Germany more important, then there are easier and cheaper ways to do this. You can simply export immaterial things, like software, and then ask huge prices.

    In this case, I think it will only be counted as trade between Ukraine and Germany.

    Btw, I sometimes order stuff on international websites, and it happened to me to that the paths seem inefficient, also when it just was within the EU.

    But it was probably a lot more efficient than it looked, as no parcel company wants to waste money on fuel and labour. And I don’t think algoritmes have any preferences for countries, they just balance costs and delivery times.

    Liked by 3 people

  • I think Moscow was a hub since Soviet times. I think the CIS countries were all processed through RuSSia. Ukraine’s turn away from Muscovy did not cause them to leave the CIS and all CIS cooperation completely. So, they may still use Muscovy as a CIS hub. It would be up to the ukrainian state and postal service to complain about this practice, but they seem to be fine with this so far.

    Liked by 4 people

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