In contrast to the large automotive exports from the U.S., the United Arab Emirates heavily relies on automotive imports with virtually the entire supply of cars and light vehicles being imported. The U.A.E.’s trade for auto parts and accessories stood at approximately $11 billion in 2015 representing around 2 million tons in terms of volume. Thanks to its strategic positioning and economic conditions, the U.A.E. is a key player in the car parts trade within the Gulf region and has positioned itself as a major re-export centre with Japan, South Korea, the U.S., Germany and China being their top auto parts trade partners.
The importance of visibility in such globalized supply chains is primarily due to the complex nature of these international trading environments. Until recently the integration of multinational automotive supply chain entities into a global supply chain overview has been overlooked.
For the majority of automotive companies, unreliable suppliers in terms of delivery time and inaccurate forecasting systems and the unexpected standstill of the production line due to insufficient or missing components are some of the major issues facing manufacturing processes. Similarly, parts arriving too early for production face the burden of being stored and maintained at large cost due to the inefficiency of the supply chain. At a time of cost pressures, over-capacities and increasingly demanding customers, automotive companies have started to invest in new ways of maintaining and improving their supply chain performance and access to real-time data becomes a major success factor towards this goal.