Find Freight, Shipping and Logistics expertise in Botswana
Freight and carriage of goods and cargo takes place to, from and within Botswana via air and land. As a landlocked country, Botswana’s nearest access to the sea is via South Africa. There is a well established road network linking the country with its neighbours, South Africa, Zambia, Zimbabwe and Namibia, with over 25,000km of roadways, of which more than 8000 km is paved. All of the main towns in the country are connected by a paved ‘inner circle’ highway.
The publicly operated Botswana Railways’ Freight Service is the country’s leading bulk goods transporter. There are ‘dry ports’ with container terminals at Gaborone, Francistown and Selebi Pikwe, providing containerised door-to-door delivery. The freight service is aided by cooperation with other rail operators, such as Transnet Freight Rail in South Africa and the National Railways of Zimbabwe, for transit freight within the SADC region and through to sea ports, as well as imports and exports. The transportation of bulk commodities is primarily driven by the mining industry.
With 76 airports overall the country has a reasonably well-developed air freight system. Air Botswana operates a dedicated cargo service between Gaborone and Johannesburg and provides limited cold room facilities at the publicly operated Sir Seretse Khama Airport.
Exports of merchandise continue to be largely sent to Europe, particularly the United Kingdom, and Southern African Customs Union members, especially South Africa. There has been some diversification with regard to export partners, with an increasing share accounted for by America and Asia.
In the World Bank’s Logistics Performance Index (2012) Botswana was placed 60th out of 155 countries in relation to infrastructure, with a value of 2.82, above the average for both sub-Saharan African nations and for its upper middle income group.
Freight and carriage operators are accredited to the Botswana Confederation of Commerce, Industry and Manpower, and the Botswana Clearing and Forwarding Association. The Ministry of Works and Transport is responsible for overseeing safe and efficient transport services, infrastructure and communication in the country.
In the World Bank’s Logistics Performance Index (2012) Botswana ranked 68th out of 155 countries overall, with a value of 2.84, 58.9% of the highest performer, Singapore, and above the sub-Saharan African average of 2.6. Each country is scored from one to five, with one being the worst performance in terms of logistics, infrastructure and customs amongst other categories. Indeed the country was again above the sub-Saharan African average in the categories of customs (48th), international shipments (111th), logistics quality and competence (75th), tracking and tracing (81st) and timeliness (58th). However, it was below the average for its income group (upper middle income) in terms of international shipments, logistics competence and tracking and tracing.