Introduction to Logistics and Supply Chain Management


The aim of this assignment is to test your knowledge and understanding on the following Learning Outcomes:

  1. Demonstrate an understanding of the integrated nature of logistics and supply chain management
  2. Discuss ways in which logistics can be used to achieve a competitive advantage and the role of enabling technologies
  3. Explain the importance of designing sustainable supply chains and provide an overview of the methods used to achieve this


Please be guided by the following:

  1. a) Students are required to demonstrate their understanding and application of the course principles taught in the module
  2. b) Course lectures / slides and prescribed text book will assist you to complete the assignment however it is expected that students would do some additional research and apply own company knowledge or work experience when using examples to illustrate points made during written submissions
  3. c) Please ensure all submission are in Arial, 12 font with 1.5 spacing and all responses are numbered as per the question sheet
  4. d) Please respond only to the question asked – your response should be guided by the word count and the marks allocated to the question.
  5. e) Referencing and Bibliography following “Harvard Style” is a compulsory requirement
  6. f) 6 marks of the total marks will be awarded for overall structure and content of the report, when measured against both syllabus requirements and the materials studied.


Company Background

You are the Logistics Manager for the Middle East Division of Healthcare International, a global company manufacturing pharmaceutical and cosmetic products.

You are responsible for managing the company’s Regional Distribution Centre in Jebel Ali where you currently receive pharmaceuticals from a factory in Rotterdam, Netherlands and cosmetics from a factory in New York, USA. The goods are consolidated in your Jebel Ali Regional Distribution Centre before supplying distributors located across the Middle East.

The Company’s sales across the globe have grown significantly and the two factories supplying the Middle East have been running at full capacity for some time. A year ago a new pharmaceuticals factory was built in Sao Paulo, Brazil and a new cosmetics factory in Bangalore, India. Until now these factories have been supplying their domestic markets only.

As the factories in the USA and Rotterdam, have insufficient capacity to continue supporting the Middle East market, a decision has been made whereby the Middle East will be supplied from the two new factories in future.

Since neither of the factories have experience in supplying foreign markets you have been asked to visit each location and ensure you and the Export Manager at each factory fully understands the logistical issues involved in transporting the goods from the production site to Jebel Ali.

The factories focus on manufacturing and do not have any of their own vehicles.


Each factory will ship approximately 5 containers per week.

Goods are normally shipped in 40ft containers (50% dry, 50% reefer to maintain +18c).

A small percentage of goods are likely to be transported by air when there is a requirement for goods to be dispatched urgently.

Inventory held in Jebel Ali

Typically you would hold the following inventory levels in Jebel Ali:

Pharmaceuticals         4 weeks cover

Cosmetics                   6 weeks cover

1 Logistics 

Discuss the various logistical issues you would have to consider before commencing the export operation, taking into account the various procedures that need to be considered, the modes of transport you may need to use and the port you will select to export the products.

(12 marks)

2 Transit Times and Inventory Levels

(a) Produce a table showing the transit time by sea from your current suppliers’ ports of export, Rotterdam and New York, to Jebel Ali port, compared to the ports you are likely to use for exporting from Brazil and India.

(5 marks)

(b) Based on these transit times discuss whether you would consider reviewing the level of inventory you hold in Jebel Ali of pharmaceuticals and cosmetics and, if so, what recommendations you would make.

(5 marks)

3 Transferring Manufacturing to the UAE

Health care International is considering transferring the manufacturing facilities to the UAE in 5 years’ time if the GCC market continues to expand.  Assess the benefits this course of action would likely bring to the Company.

(12 marks)