Business associations unveil joint initiative to tackle growing cargo thefts across Germany

Published: Sunday, March 11, 2018

Business associations in Germany have launched a joint initiative to tackle growing cargo thefts across the country which, according to a new report, result in product losses valued at €1.3 billion a year.

The size of the problem has been identified by the joint calculations of several business associations, led by the Transported Asset Protection Association (TAPA). According to the analysis, physical cargo carried onboard almost 26,000 trucks is stolen in Germany every year, averaging a new attack on a truck every 20 minutes. In addition to the value of the goods, the group says further damages of €900 million are caused by penalties for delivery delays, the cost of replacing stolen products and repairing damage to vehicles targeted by cargo thieves.

One of the biggest challenges identified in the report is the low level of reporting and recording of cargo thefts in Germany, which follows a similar trend seen across Europe, and the fact that many of the incidents of thefts from vehicles in Germany involve trucks which are registered and insured in other European countries. Understanding the true causes and impact of cargo crime in Germany is also further complicated by the fact that German law enforcement agencies do not keep their own cargo crime statistics.

With the launch of their new ‘Theft Prevention in Freight Transport and Logistics Working Group’, the associations are calling for greater support and action by law enforcement agencies in Germany.

In a statement, the Working Group says, “The business associations supporting this initiative are doing so because of the scale of cargo thefts and their impact on businesses in Germany. The ‘Theft Prevention in Freight Transport and Logistics Working Group’ aims to increase the safety of transport logistics by, among other things, means of higher safety standards and investments in locating technology, anti-theft alarm systems, immobilizers and secured parking spaces. We are urging the authorities to provide more support through increased search pressure on internationally active criminal organizations. The police authorities also need to be more present at highway service stations, and specialist police units and law enforcement agencies should help to streamline transnational law enforcement. In order to take targeted preventive and repressive measures, the investigating authorities must improve recording of ‘cargo theft’ offences and create the conditions for nationwide uniform reporting of cargo crime. Lack of staff, poor networking and low specialization only serve to delay investigations. This situation has to be addressed as quickly as possible.”

The association members of the Theft Prevention in Freight Transport and Logistics Working Group are:

• ASW Bundesverband – Allianz für Sicherheit in der Wirtschaft Ev
• Alliance for Security in Business North Germany (ASWN)
• BDGW Bundesvereinigung Deutscher Geld- und Wertdienste Ev
• Federal Association of Road Haulage Logistics and Waste Management (BGL) Ev
• Bundesverband Paket und Expresslogistik e. V. (BIEK),
• Federal Association for the Economy, Transport and Logistics (BWVL) e.V.
• German Forwarding and Logistics Association e. V. (DSLV)
• Gesamtverband der Deutschen Versicherungswirtschaft e.V. (GDV)
• Transported Asset Protection Association (TAPA)
• Verband Chemiehandel e.V. (VCH)
• German Chemical Industry Association (VCI)
• Verband Deutscher Verkehrsunternehmen e. V. (VDV)

In support of the Working Group’s objectives to reduce cargo thefts in Germany, TAPA will also be encouraging companies across the country to increase their adoption of its three industry standards for supply chain security: Facility Security Requirements (FSR), Trucking Security Requirements (TSR) and the new Parking Security Requirements (PSR).