Maritime Cyprus 2013 Conference Reaches Conclusion
The “Maritime Cyprus 2013” Conference, a Conference of a worldwide range, organised for the thirteenth time since its inception in 1989, continued Wednesday for the third day and has successfully reached its completion. The large attendance proves once again its vast importance and reputation as a global shipping Conference.
Wednesday’s discussion was focused on the subject “Looking Ahead to the Future” and was divided into two parts, the first one examining “The Human Element in Shipping: Anticipating New Challenges?” whereas the second inquired into “Trends in Shipping”.
The first discussion relating to “The Human Element in Shipping: Anticipating New Challenges?” was moderated by Mr. Stephen Cotton, General Secretary of the International Transport Workers’ Federation – ITF. The group of panellists was consisted of: Mr. Hans Leo J. Cacdac, Administrator of the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration – POEA, Mr. Giampiero Soncini, Chief Executive Officer of SpecTec Group and Mr. Constantinos S. Galanakis, Chief Executive Officer of ELVICTOR Group. The discussion covered various aspects, such as perspectives beyond the Maritime Labour Convention (MLC) 2006, seafarers (homo maritimus) and Information Technology as well as new challenges in shipping. Particular emphasis was granted to the increasing need/demand for competent crew in view of the rapid expansion of the world fleet (84,000 oceangoing vessels) and the shortage of seafarers at the same time (by 2015 there will be a shortage of 60,000 officers/ competent crew members). The need for investment in the human factor was stressed out, since good seafaring competence can guarantee safe and profitable operations, through communicating the multiple opportunities for recruitment, the attractive salaries, as well as caring for appropriate and innovative employment and living conditions. The need to establish, beyond MLC, supplementary appropriate arrangements in order to remedy the problem of the abandonment of seafarers in case of shipowner’s insolvency, was expressed during this debate. The establishment of such arrangements requires the cooperation of all stakeholders involved, such as Flag States, Port State Control Authorities, Trade Unions, Shipowners, Bankers, Insurers. Furthermore, the discussions underlined the necessity to promote the seafaring profession through appropriate media campaigns.
The second discussion inquired into “Trends in Shipping”. Moderator of the discussion was Captain Eugen H. Adami, President of the Cyprus Shipping Chamber. The group of panellists was consisted: of Dr. Martin Stopford, Non Executive President of Clarksons Research Studies, London, Mr. Dagfinn Lunde, Member of the Board of Norddeutsche Landesbank Girozentrale, and Mr. Thomas Rehder, President-Elect of the European Community Shipowners’ Association – ECSA. The discussion was focused on the forecasting statistics concerning the future developments in global shipping, the new market trends as well as the future and emerging opportunities. It was indicated that currently the market has built-up a sizable surplus of ships which may constitute 25% of the fleet. The surplus is being absorbed by slow steaming which will need to be realised before real market is re-established. Furthermore, it was stressed that whereas new buildings offer technological solutions second hand ships are considered still young and worth improving and may be upgraded in order to extent their life time. Concluding, it was expressed that in the future shipping and the market will improve for almost all types of freight with the exception of crude oil, the trade of which is expected to improve in a much slower pace. With regard to ship financing of, it was pointed out that it is anticipated that opportunities will be available for credible shipowners through new financing systems.
Cy.GOV, October 10, 2013