Intermodal Transportation and Supply Chain Efficiency: A Kenyan Perspective

Francis Afande Ofunya


Globalization has forced many firms to restructure their supply chains. Firms now not only operate within national boundaries but across international boundaries. Intermodal transportation holds the solution for this movement within national and across international boundaries. This study was conducted to establish the effect of intermodal transportation among Kenyan firms. A total of 71 Kenyan firms from manufacturing, Distribution and Logistics sectors were involved in the survey. The study findings reveal that Several Kenyan firms utilize more than one mode of transportation to move goods to and from various destinations. Road transport is the most popular mode of transport due to its ability to deliver door to door transportation services. Rail transport is the second most popular mode of transport because of the cost involved in moving goods by rail. It is cheaper than road and air modes. However rail transport suffers from network disadvantages since it serves a few regions in the country. Air transport is also used though by a few firms because it is the most expensive mode of transport. It is commonly used by firms that are engaged in horticultural farming. Water transport is also among the popular modes of transport that is used to transport bulky goods to and from other countries. It is also considered cheaper than all the other modes of transport. Intermodal transportation has enabled most firms to reduce supply chain costs, reduce lead times, engage in cheaper global sourcing of goods and materials, reduce downtimes and maintain steady flow of goods. It has also enabled the firms to get value for money spent.

Keywords: Intermodal, Transportation and Efficiency

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