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  April 27th, 2018 | Written by

DHL CEO: ‘The Future is Global’

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  • Deutsche Post DHL Group CEO: Ecommerce continuing to generate sustained growth.
  • Optimism about free trade and globalization from DHL CEO Frank Appel.
  • DHL CEO: "If you build new barriers, you will not be successful in the long term.”

Optimism is warranted with regard to the global economic environment, and global trade will continue to grow despite many uncertainties.

That’s according to Frank Appel, CEO of Deutsche Post DHL Group at the company’s annual general meeting in Bonn this week.

The new DHL Global Trade Barometer also underpinned this trend. “The future is global. Anything else is a misconception,” said Appel. “If you build new barriers, you will not be successful in the long term. Walls are not the solution. We want to make tomorrow better than today. To achieve this, we need to grow together even more.”

Speaking to shareholders, the CEO made reference to the positive effects of global trade for improving living conditions in many regions of the world. Deutsche Post DHL Group is investing globally, Appel noted. “And wherever we invest, we help to ensure that society develops and prosperity grows,” he added. “Protectionism is the wrong path. No matter where it is or what form it takes.”

After a very successful year in 2017, Appel considers Deutsche Post DHL Group to be well on track to achieve its strategic and financial goals for 2020. “We are strongly positioned for a successful future,” he said. “In 2017, with the current structure in place, we achieved the best result in the history of our company.” Appel confirmed the goal of increasing operating profit in the current financial year to 4.15 billion euros. Operating will top five billion euros by 2020, Appel predicted, saying that this was challenging, but realistic.

Ecommerce would remain a key engine for the business of Deutsche Post DHL Group, Appel said. In 2020, an estimated 2.1 billion people around the world would shop online. Global online revenue would increase to $4.1 trillion—assuming ecommerce is simple for customers.

Logistics is the backbone of ecommerce,” said Appel. “And we make it really simple. From placing a pick-up order to tracking the current status of an item through to payment.” DHL Parcel Europe’s network already covers 26 countries, Appel noted. Bulgaria, Ireland, Croatia, and Romania were added in 2017 and a total of over 60,000 parcel drop-off or pick-up points are available.

“We manage our business in a way that ensures we make a positive contribution to society,” said Appel, pointing to progress in the area of climate protection. Compared to 2007, the company had improved carbon efficiency in logistics by 32 percent. By 2050, the group’s greenhouse gas emissions are expected to be reduced net to zero.