No one has to tell FIATA Immediate Past President Babar Badat
that life has its fair amount of highs and lows.
Mr. Badat of Pakistan who, in 2017 assumed command of the
world’s preeminent logistics organization with 120 National Associations
and 50,000 companies as members worldwide saw the hope and promise of
the organization’s annual 2018 “World Congress” held
in New Delhi impact him personally when India refused to issue a visa
to this extraordinary industry builder, claiming some bureaucratic snafu.
Of course, Pakistan and India at loggerheads over many issues
these days may have played into that decision.
But if Badat was taken by surprise, attendees at FIATA New
Delhi 2018 carried on as usual, thanks to some quick thinking by Badat.
Badat still chaired the main meetings via video link but was
quick to designate his other duties as host President to his colleagues
as the band played on.
This year at the just completed FIATA World Congress in Cape
Town October 2-5, Babar hosted, what most folks inside and outside the
organization agree, was one of the greatest World Congresses in the 90
plus year history of the organization.
Meetings were crisp and well planned, the venue was sparkling,
the food was great and last, but not least, the hosts put on a great presentation
rich in African culture and pride of place.
From the opening of the sessions to the grand closing gala
the halls of downtown Cape Town were filled with music and song amidst
waves of persuasive percussion.
“I think the changes, I am most satisfied and proud
of was the 98% vote to move our headquarters from Zurich to Geneva and
the merger of two separate endeavors within FIATA into one upgraded organization
to train & educate the next generation of logisticians.
Geneva is the global headquarters of multilateral organizations, many
of which interact with us, it is also the business city of Switzerland,
the online capitol of commerce.
“We will be better centered for growth and progress
in the 21st century by being located in Geneva,” Badat said.
“The FIATA vocational training program is already the
best in the logistics industry and now moving forward we will combine
our Advisory Body Vocational Training and the FIATA Logistics Academy
into one upgraded Institute that will both extend the scope and range
of our training program.”
Babar Badat is undefeatable.
Based in Karachi, his group Transhold and its companies have
grown throughout Pakistan and the region.
But in terms of giving back and opening doors, not only has
he been instrumental in the founding of organized logistics, transport
and freight forwarding activities throughout his home country and the
region for scores of other companies, he departs the FIATA Presidency,
having delivered step change to that great organization that will be felt
for generations to come.
“My greatest wish is to continue building trade and
better understanding between people everywhere and will continue my work
with FIATA as member of the board of directors,” Badat said.
We wonder about breaking down the barriers between Pakistan
Badat says simply with a smile:
“That may take a bit more time.”