Without well developed transportation systems, logistics could not bring its advantages into full play. Besides, a good transport system in logistics activities could provide better logistics efficiency, reduce operation cost, and promote service quality. The improvement of transportation systems needs the effort from both public and private sectors. A well-operated logistics system could increase both the competitiveness of the government and enterprises.
BTRE (2001) indicated that Australian gross value added of the transport and storage sector was $34,496 million in 1999-2000, or 5.6% of GDP. Figure 3 shows the components of logistics costs based on the estimation from Air Transportation Association (Chang, 1988). This analysis shows transportation is the highest cost, which occupies 29.4% of logistics costs, and then in order by inventory, warehousing cost, packing cost, management cost, movement cost and ordering cost. The ratio is almost one-third of the total logistics costs. The transportation cost here includes the means of transportation, corridors, containers, pallets, terminals, labours, and time. This figure signifies not only the cost structure of logistics systems but also the importance order in improvement processing. It occupies an important ratio in logistics activities. The improvement of the item of higher operation costs can get better effects. Hence, logistics managers must comprehend transport system operation thoroughly.
Transport system makes goods and products movable and provides timely and regional efficacy to promote value-added under the least cost principle. Transport affects the results of logistics activities and, of course, it influences production and sale. In the logistics system, transportation cost could be regarded as a restriction of the objective market. Value of transportation varies with different industries. For those products with small volume, low weight and high value, transportation cost simply occupies a very small part of sale and is less regarded; for those big, heavy and low-valued products, transportation occupies a very big part of sale and affects profits more, and therefore it is more regarded.