Apollo in the Spotlight: Louis Uko

For the newest edition of our Apollo member interview, we sat down with Louis Uko in Blantyre, Malawi. We discussed his extensive logistics experience so far, despite a start in electrical engineering, and his passion for international trade.

How did you get started in the logistics industry and what has your journey been like so far?

In the first place, my career was towards Electrical Engineering, but I did not like it until I was influenced by my mother (MHSRIP) to study something to do with International Trade. That time is was Customs Declaration, Forwarding and Shipping Management, that is some 23 years ago. And after some studies in Customs / Freight Forwarding and Shipping, that was when I discovered The Chartered Institute of Shipbrokers of London United Kingdom.

In 2003, I started my studies, whilst working as Operations Office at a freight related logistics company, doing customs clearing and so on. When in 2010 I finished my PQE, with ICS of London, got a Job as Country Warehouse Manager of Carlsberg Malawi Limited; then after Logistics Manager of an NGO, then Procurement Manager of Malawi Telecommunication Limited, then become a business consultant before going back to full time freight logistics in 2017.

If there is one thing that you could change to the logistics industry, what would it be and why?

Regulations for participating in Air Freight are so hard. Especially the path to being an IATA Cargo Agent in this part of our world is so hard. I am always interested with International Transport and when inland that is Air-Transport and when at Sea, Ocean Freight. I wish I could open my own agency in future and be a dedicated IATA Cargo Agent.

What do you like most about the industry and your job in particular?

I like the innovations that take place across the wide/global Transportation and Logistics Industry, the development of ‘Containerization’ is one thing and the development of technologies for freight/goods tracing is also another. In my job, I like solving problems, challenges and also advising the trades on the best possible solutions which provide positive bottom-lines.

How do you set yourself apart from your competitors?

Investing in more related skills, thinking globally and acting locally and also being very objective all the time.

What do you like the most about being a member of our logistics network?

The cordial relationship that is being developed is an important element of being part of this network.

How do you relax in your free time?

Preparing some meals, chatting with friends, enjoying some drinks and also playing some video games.

— Thank you, Louis !