The fourth annual The Maritime Standard Ship Finance and Trade Conference will be held at the Sheraton Abu Dhabi Hotel & Resort on 6th November this year. The Conference last year attracted a high quality audience of around 150 executives and decision makers from across the industry. They assembled to discuss and debate the key issues and trends facing the shipping and ports market in the Middle East and the Indian Subcontinent, with a particular focus on financial issues. The audience heard from some of the most well-known personalities in the business, all leaders in their chosen fields, who highlighted the importance of building partnerships to help accelerate investment-led growth within the industry.
Keynote speeches at the event were given by two prominent, and influential figures within the UAE shipping and ports sectors. A presentation by H.E. Dr. Abdullah Salem Al-Katheeri, Director General, Federal Transport Authority (FTA) – Land & Maritime, was followed by Abdulkareem Al Masabi, Executive Vice President, Ports, Abu Dhabi Ports, who were key supporters of the event.
The main conference session focused on how politico-economic factors are likely to shape future opportunities and challenges for the shipping and ports sectors. The audience heard from several high profile personalities in the industry including: Abdulla Bin Damithan, Director Commercial, DP World – UAE Region; Khamis Juma Buamim, Managing Director and Group Chief Executive, Gulf Navigation Holdings; Chris Peters, Chief Executive Officer, Emirates Ship Investment Company; and Ross Thompson, Acting Chief Commercial and Strategy Officer, Ports, Abu Dhabi Ports. Ali Shehab, Deputy Chief Executive, Kuwait Oil Tanker Company, also made a special presentation to the Conference by video link.
The first of twoafternoon sessions focussed on how best to develop strategies for the future, working with the financial sector. Highlights included presentations by Jacob Berman, Managing Director, Infrastructure and Transportation, Corporate & Institutional Banking, Standard Chartered; Andrew Simmons, Chief Executive, Global Marine Transport Capital; Bora Bariman, Head of Energy & Marine, National Bank of Fujairah; Andrew Baird, Partner, Watson Farley & Williams (Middle East); and Adel Al Wahedi, Chief Financial Officer, Abu Dhabi Ports. The audience also heard from Sinan Ozcan about the new Maersk Trade Financeprogramme, which has recently been launched in the UAE.
The third and final session featured case studies illustrating how different businesses can be developed to diversify regional maritime clusters, in support of shipping and trade growth. Speakers in this section included June Manoharan, Director, Lukoil Marine Lubricants; Katherine Yakunchenkova; General Manager, Al Safina Security; and Stephen Bligh, Senior Principal Consultant, DNV-GL
After the presentations there was a networking opportunity at which attendees and panellists were able tocontinue discussions about issues raised during the event.
The first two TMS Ship Finance and Trade Conferences held in 2015 and 2016 were also both very successful, bringing together experts from the fields of shipping, ports, banking, finance, trade and maritime law. The TMS Ship Finance and Trade Conference has now attained a unique reputation as an occasion where speakers and panelists willingly share their insights and knowledge through a series of well researched presentations and stimulating discussions.
For the 2018 TMS Ship Finance and Trade event, currently at the planning stage, a similarly high caliber list of speakers will be assembled. Based on the very positive experience of the first three events, this will be a not-to-be-missed Conference that will not only feature a chance to learn from industry experts, but will provide extensive opportunities for networking as well.
Attending the conference provides shipping and trade professionals the opportunity to create dialogue with key decision makers representing the biggest names in the industry.
Acting/Chief – Commercial and Strategy Officer – Ports, Abu Dhabi Ports
Partner, Watson Farley & Williams (Middle East)
Head of the Energy & Marine, National Bank of Fujairah