logo #LNGFuels 4–5 November 2020

Interview with Carlos Mendonça, Managing Director/Operations Director, HAVI Logistics Portugal

It cannot be that we have partners that are truck constructors, that from one side are showing concern about environmental activities but when it comes to their products prices are not showing a strong interest in making them more competitive when compared to a normal diesel truck.

HAVI logistics have a fantastic track record of sustainability and environmental activities, can you tell us a little about how the decision to be involved in the Blue Corridors project came about?

In fact our decision was taken further back than just the Blue Corridors project. As a company we have a huge interest in our environmental culture. For a long time we have been interested in alternative solutions in regards to our transport needs and using our own trucks, but also our dedicated subcontractors. Crossing Europe to move cargo among our DCs in Europe, or from suppliers to our DCs, meant the Blue Corridors project started to make sense. However, it is a project that is/will develop step by step, and not at the same speed in other countries – as each country is a different case and reality.

Of the 710 trucks on the road, HAVI’s fleet are among the “greenest” on the road using a variety of alternative fuels, can you tell us about the reasoning behind having a fuel mix and any future plans specifically relating to more LNG fuelled trucks?

The needs or the wish to use alternative fuel has started. I can mention the usage of biodiesel in some countries and some such countries using several biodiesel combinations during the year. The natural gas trucks usage, combined with the wish to contribute to a more clean logistics industry, is proven to be a reality. On the other end, the usage of LNG trucks today is more and more competitive in terms of autonomy, which will lead us to more acquisitions. One important aspect is the network availability, but I am sure that as more and more companies invest in these truck types the network itself will develop further.

Given the current energy price climate, it is extremely difficult to remain economical whilst investing in alternative fuels – has the current climate had an impact at the rate in which HAVI makes investments in alternative fuels or are you pursuing a green agenda in spite of it?

The green agenda is a target. HAVI have a commitment with their environmental activities, therefore, unless prices will move dramatically I don’t foresee a change in our targets. In Portugal so far, regardless the fluctuations of the fuel/ diesel costs, natural gas is a good price option. On the other hand, natural gas costs and “normal” fuels have still a connection in the pricing evolution. If the actual gap as it happens in Portugal stays at the same trend, then we are going in the right direction.

HAVI logistics are participating in the 3rd LNG Fuel Summit – can you tell us a little about your expectations for the Summit and a snippet about what we can expect to hear from you?

What I’m most looking forward to at the CWC LNG Fuels Summit, is understanding how the usage of this fuel will develop, what the big companies are thinking, how countries governments have an agenda to make this fuel usage more common and how to get a real industry “professional” fuel with a strong price advantage. I also want to see how users, and in conjunction with other countries, will be able to bring down the costs of the trucks in order to make it a more favourable and attractive purchase.

It cannot be that we have partners that are truck constructors, that from one side are showing their concerns about the environmental activities but when it comes to their products prices are not showing a strong interest in making them more competitive when compared to a normal diesel truck. I am curious to see this point debated at the CWC LNG Fuels Summit.

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