Posidonia 2018, the world’s leading shipping exhibition, is being inaugurated today, Monday 4 June, at the Athens Metropolitan Expo and will last until 8 June. Speakers at the Opening Ceremony are Mr. Kitack Lim, Secretary General of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO); Mrs Violeta Bulc, Commissioner for Transport, European Commission; Mr. Theodore Veniamis, President of the Union of Greek Shipowners; Mr. Alexis Tsipras, Greek Prime Minister.
Posidonia celebrates its 50th anniversary with record number of exhibitors and 16% floor space increase, welcoming over 1.920 companies from 92 countries, and is expected to attract over 22.000 visitors. Posidonia hosts 22 national pavilions this year, including leading shipbuilding nations, traditional maritime powers, the major maritime centres and flag states, as well as quite a few newcomers.
The key attraction remains the strong presence of the powerful Greek shipowning community, which is leading global newbuilding activity with 61 Greek companies having ships on order worth an estimated USD 16bn. More than 60 Information and Communications Technology (ICT) companies participate at Posidonia 2018 providing the shippings industry with solutions ranging from fully-automated ports to unmanned smart ships.
Over 40 conferences, seminars and workshops comprise the Posidonia 2018 Conferences and Seminars Programme Posidonia contributes a total of 62 million Euro to the local and national economy. The tourism industry, stand construction, forwarders, catering companies, corporate events etc. benefit from the biennial Posidonia windfall.
Greek Minister of Maritime Affairs & Insular Policy, Panagiotis Kouroumplis said: “The Greek mercantile marine sector has played a crucial role in the economic and social development of Greece, has helped enhance the country’s international reputation and contributed in the cohesion and new job creation efforts of local communities everywhere across the nation. The Posidonia Exhibition is a timeless institution advocating globally the best example Greece has to show in terms of entrepreneurship and productivity.”
The 16 percent year-on-year floor space increase of the biennial exhibition, which is regarded as one of the most influential maritime gatherings globally, reflects the resilience of the Greek shipping sector and the sheer size of the Greek-owned fleet, which controls the largest fleet and the greatest cargo carrying capacity, representing about 20 percent of the global fleet in dwt terms.
A total of 22 countries will deploy their national pavilions at Posidonia 2018 to showcase each nation’s collective shipping offering to a captive audience of sellers, buyers of maritime products and services and policy makers. Brazil and Poland will be debuting their pavilions next to the more established and traditional national presence of China, Japan, South Korea and western European countries such as the United Kingdom, Denmark and The Netherlands.
Furthermore, Azerbaijan Caspian Shipping, the national shipping company of Azerbaijan, Bahri, the national shipping company of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and International Maritime Industries, the new shipyard project by Saudi Aramco, have also chosen Posidonia 2018 as the global forum to present their new corporate identities. And even the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) has selected Posidonia 2018 as the first non-cruise event to participate in.
The list of exhibitors becomes every time more diverse, with a wide range of companies ranging from AIRBUS Defence and Space Geo to MAN Trucks and from ERP heavy-hitter SAP to Gazpromneft Lubricants and highly sophisticated weather forecast by Weathernews and Storm Geo to the Greek ports of Thessaloniki and Volos, who booked their first independent Posidonia participation.
In addition, during Posidonia 2018, a constellation of 40 thought provoking presentations, seminars, speeches and heated panel discussions are yet again expected to set the global shipping agenda and define the future of an industry that sits at the core of world economic developments.
(References: Medi Telegraph, Reuters, The Maritime Executive)
Sea News Feature, June 4