"With higher ocean freight costs, companies are looking to save on costs elsewhere. Flexitanks are the most economical system out there for loading non-haz bulk liquids."

Santiago Carús

MANAGING DIRECTOR, EUROMEX LOGISTICS

May 19, 2022

Can you provide details of Euromex's services for the chemical sector, including flexitanks and iso-tanks?

Euromex is part of a customs agency with a history of more than 100 years dispatching goods in Mexico. We are in the main Mexican ports with our own offices. In addition to customs clearance, we have specialized transports; we are currently the leader in Mexico in flexitanks, which consist of a polyethylene bag inside a 20 ft container that can load 24,000 lts of non-haz liquids. Furthermore, we represent about seven Asian and European isotank operators, which allows us to transport hazardous chemicals imported from Asia and Europe. We also have tanks available for the export of hazardous chemicals. More than anything else, I would say the most important thing Euromex has is its people and the service we give to customers. We are committed to punctuality, security and making their life easier.

How can Euromex help clients mitigate the current global logistics bottlenecks?

In terms of containers, we made alliances with carriers. If, for example, I need to load two containers in Guadalajara but there are none at the city, a carrier that is in Altamira port will bring only one container available from there and on its way to Guadalajara will stop to another location such as San Luis Potosí to pick the other container. This way we stay on the same route, do not raise costs and comply with the customer.

As for flexitank containers, from the beginning Euromex always bought type A containers. Today, the shipping companies usually send non-specialized containers because that is all they have. In reaction to this we chose to innovate and reinforce the walls of the containers with steel bars. This increased costs a little, but importantly made the containers for flexitanks safer and eligible for export. There is no worse cost than to stop exporting, so creativity is necessary to adapt.

The global flexitank market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 18.9% from 2020 to 2027. What are the reasons behind this?

The phenomenon of flexitanks has been growing every year since mass use of these products began in 2000. With higher ocean freight costs, companies are looking to save on costs elsewhere. Flexitanks are the most economical system out there for loading non-haz bulk liquids. That is why many companies are changing from using drums or 1000 IBC units to flexitanks. This is being done even for small volumes because the savings are between US$1,500 to US$2,000 per container. Flexitanks are relatively new, so there is still plenty of opportunity for this market to grow in the coming years.

Euromex exports a Ready to Drink Spirit from Tequila, Jalisco to the United States. Previously, this product was piped over 3,000 km from Tequila, Jalisco, to Los Angeles, but now it goes by sea in flexitanks. This is thanks to that reduced cost: instead of five pipes per month, we are sending 20 flexitanks. Many companies are also switching from isotanks to flexitanks for non-hazardous liquids such as glycerin and lubricating oils. Flexitanks comply with all the certifications, such as FDA and kosher, so now you have a lot of food grade products and water transported this way.

How has safety in the Mexican logistics sector improved in recent years?

One of the challenges in Latin American countries like Mexico is security in terms of robbery and accidents. Both have declined greatly in recent years as companies have pushed security programs such as CTPAT (Customs Trade Partnership Against Terrorism) and OEA (Operador Económico Autorizado) in Mexico. You must have these certifications if you want to run a triple A company.

On the technology side, there are now companies that have cameras inside their trucks to see in real time what the operator is doing and at what speed they are driving, as well as 360 degree cameras that can see who is coming behind and in front of the truck. Now with the push of a button the driver can stop the truck and nobody can move it, or from the monitoring center they can see that there is a suspicious car behind or in front of the truck and warn the operator and stop the engine until that situation is over. This has greatly reduced incidents of robbery and accidents.

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