Global Maritime Leaders to Meet at Dubai Summit 2018

Claes Berglund

DUBAI, 9th October, 2018 – Best practices and innovative solutions in the global maritime sector, based on innovation, knowledge and joint cooperation will be discussed at the Dubai Maritime Summit 2018, to be held later this month, in Dubai, UAE.

The Dubai Maritime City Authority (DMCA) has completed its preparations to host the summit, to be held on October 28, under the patronage of HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and chairman of the Executive Council, with an aim to strengthen the communication channels between international leaders.

The forum also gains strategic significance as an ideal platform to capitalise on Dubai’s pioneering experience as one of the top five in the International Shipping Centre Development Index and one of the world’s five most competitive and attractive maritime clusters, in light of the emerging opportunities and challenges currently faced by the global maritime sector, said a statement from the organisers.

Claes Berglund, vice president, European Community Shipowners’ Association (ECSA), one of the main speakers at the summit, said: “The shipping industry is undergoing constant change; due to the emergence of new technologies, new regulations, rising awareness, and environmental factors. All of these elements are changing the competitors’ landscape.”

“The achievements of the continuing strong economic growth in Asia and other parts of the world are changing the game of trade everywhere. Dubai is in the centre of this change and a maritime centre that is growing in importance,” he said.

“We are very much looking forward to take part in the summit and learn more from distinguished speakers in our industry,” he added.

Amer Ali, executive director of DMCA, said that the hosting of the summit reflects Dubai’s pivotal role in strengthening international cooperation frameworks to find innovative solutions to current and emerging challenges, based on specific technological and maritime innovation, in line with efforts to enhance the sustainability and capacity of the maritime industry to meet the requirements of the 21st century.

He pointed out that the summit is preparing to bring together an elite group of creative minds, decision-makers, policy makers and maritime economic experts from all over the world. The event is expected to see a high level of participation from the world’s top maritime leaders, a reflection of the high levels of confidence placed in Dubai by the global maritime industry.

Ali expressed confidence that the event will allow Dubai to share its pioneering experience and showcase its competitiveness and attractiveness to the international investment community–highlighting modern legislation, advanced technology and emerging innovations that pave the way for the global maritime sector to attain new levels of growth, prosperity and sustainability.

The conference will feature five key interactive sessions, the first of which will focus on the reality of the maritime sector in the world and its preparations for the future. The meeting will be attended by Dr George D Pateras, president of Hellenic Chamber of Shipping and Hellenic Maritime Cluster; Claes Berglund, vice president, European Community Shipowners’ Association (ECSA) and director of Public Affairs & Sustainability; Stena AB, Steena Agency (AB); and Esben Poulsson, chairman of International Chamber of Shipping.

The second session on container transport and logistics and the impact of its investment in IT, including Blockchain technology, on the way that logistics industry handles its business. The session will be attended by Mohammed Al Muallem, chief executive officer and managing director, UAE Region, DP World; Iqbal Alikhan, program director, Blockchains and Innovations of IBM Middle East and Africa, and Dheeraj Bhatia, senior managing director, Region Middle East of Hapag Lloyd Middle East.

The third session is scheduled to review the most important preparations and prospects for the major shipping markets. Ralph Leszczynski, global head of research of Banchero Costa Group; and Captain Harihar Prasad, managing director, McQuilling Shipping Services DMCC, will take part in the discussion.

The fourth session will be on China’s Belt and Road Initiative and the impact and opportunities in the Middle East region’s maritime sector. The session will be attended by Ross Thompson, chief commercial and strategy officer at Abu Dhabi Ports; Rayan Qutub, chief executive officer at King Abdullah Port; and Khalid Hashim, managing director of Precious Shipping.

The fifth and final session revolves around the financing options for ship owners and the latest services and technologies in this field, with the participation of Bora Bariman, head of energy and marine, Corporate and Institutional Banking of National Bank of Fujairah; Adrian Economakis, chief operating officer of Vessels Value; Domenik Nizet, senior vice president Shipping Finance, Asia Pacific & Middle East, DVB Bank SE.

Furthermore, the upcoming summit will host the second edition of the Dubai Innovation Maritime Awards, a prestigious initiative that honours the most valuable contributions and innovative initiatives supporting the growth, development and prosperity of the local maritime community, which stands out among the best in the world.

The UAE Maritime Week 2018 is expected to attract more than 400 exhibitors from leading maritime companies from around the world, with more than 8,000 visitors including leading regional and global maritime experts.

The event will discuss the latest developments in the sector and will review the most important solutions and promising opportunities that the maritime sector in Dubai boasts. It will also feature important events such as the Maritime Future Leaders Seminar; the Emirates Maritime Arbitration Conference; and the Seatrade Middle East Maritime Exhibition – the largest maritime exhibition in the Middle East – as well as the Seatrade ME Maritime Awards.

The Maritime Innovation Day, being organised by DMCA in cooperation with Det Norske Veritas GL (DNV GL) and the Overseas conference, organised by Clarksons Platou, a global leader in maritime brokerage and investment banking, are also among highlights of the event, it stated.