SINGAPORE: There are plans to roll out a federated locker system in residential areas to improve the last mile delivery of parcels around the island, said Deputy Prime Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam on Tuesday (Apr 26).
The advantages of a federated locker. (Infographic: MCI)
Speaking at an industry launch event, Mr Tharman, who is also the Coordinating Minister for Economic and Social Policies, underscored the need to continue transforming the logistics sector to support an evolving retail industry.
He said: "One of the key initiatives that we have embarked on in this regard is the large scale deployment of parcel lockers within Singapore. This is to ease the last mile delivery challenges for small parcels.
"Based on IDA’s findings, the biggest problem faced by our local delivery companies is in making door-to-door deliveries and finding that no one is at home to receive the goods. Return visits add to costs and often inconvenience for customers."
He added that in order to reduce inefficiencies, such as return deliveries, Singapore is looking into the "large scale deployment of common parcel lockers". Mr Tharman noted that while some companies are already implementing a similar system, it would costly for all companies to do the same.
According to Mr Tharman, IDA and economic agencies will look to implement the federated locker system in areas with higher demand before expanding to the rest of Singapore.
"I believe we will be the first country to do this nationwide," he said.
Another initiative involves stationing a logistics operator within a mall to receive and consolidate the delivered goods and provide last mile delivery to retail shops. Mr Tharman said IDA plans to roll this out in Tampines Mall and Bedok Mall in July this year.