Maritime Cyprus conference to embrace change

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The Deputy Ministry of Shipping hosts its biennial Maritime Cyprus conference in Limassol in October to tackle a rapidly changing industry in seafarer welfare, digital transformation, green finance, and the changing role of shipowners.

Several hundred shipping leaders will be able to meet again in person on October 10-13, with the conference main theme being “Embracing Change: a choice or necessity?”

The line-up features senior representatives of regulatory bodies, including International Maritime Organisation Secretary-General Kitack Lim, European Transport Commissioner Adena Valean, the International Chamber of Shipping, ECSA and BIMCO, renowned shipowners world-class experts in the maritime sector.

Vassilios Demetriades, Shipping Deputy Minister, said 2020 was a significant year for shipping and the world.

“Adversity often breeds innovation and agility, and – as an industry – we should feel proud of what we have achieved in such unprecedented circumstances.

“But there is still so much more to do, and this requires cooperation and collaboration,” the conference host said.

“We look forward to welcoming industry colleagues and friends to an exciting and lively debate on key topics. In addition, we will share our new strategic vision for Cyprus shipping.”

On Sunday, October 10, a welcoming reception at Limassol’s Amathus Beach Hotel where two awards will be presented – the Cyprus Maritime Personality Award and the Cyprus Shipping Industry Award.

Nominations closed on August 23 and were submitted to the Shipping Deputy Ministry.

They are being reviewed by a Selection Committee of representatives from the public and private sectors of the Cyprus maritime community.

The conference will be held at the Carob Mill Conference Centre between October 11-13.

President Nicos Anastasiades will address the official opening at 9 am on Monday, October 11, followed by a keynote speech and presentation on “Navigating the new normal” by Ben Nolan, Managing Director, Maritime & Energy Infrastructure Research at Stifel Financial Corp.

It will be followed by a discussion on “Is the Regulatory framework ready to embrace change?” with Deputy Shipping Minister Vassilis Demetriades, EU Transport Commissioner Adina Valean, IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim, International Chamber of Shipping Chairman Esben Poulsson and Claes Berglund, President of the European Community Shipowners’ Associations (ECSA).

Four industry panellists will discuss “The Role of Shipowners: Towards a sustainable, safe and resilient industry” with George Mouskas, Vice President of the Cyprus Union of Shipowners as moderator.

CUS President Andreas Hadjiyiannis will join him, and Dynacom Tankers Management Chairman George Procopiou and Eastern Mediterranean Maritime Managing Director Thanassis Martinos.

The first day will conclude with a review of “The Decade of the Shipping Super Cycle” hosted by Cyprus Shipping Chamber President Themis Papadopoulos, with Jan Rindbo, CEO of Norden and Hugo De Stoop, CEO of Euronav NV to be confirmed.

Green shipping

Tuesday’s sessions will focus on the environment with the first panel discussing “The importance of Green in shipping”, followed by “Towards zero emissions in shipping: What is the tipping point?” moderated by Sveinung Oftedal, Specialist Director at Norway’s Ministry of Climate and Environment, and “How ‘Green’ is the Financial Framework?” moderated by Kristin Holth, non-executive director at Maersk Tankers.

An afternoon session for young executives will talk about “Embracing Inspiration in Shipping” with invited panellists including Maria Angelicoussis, CEO of the Angelicoussis Group, Philippos Ioulianou, President of YoungShip International, and Aristos Philis, Strategic Development at Lemissoler Navigation.

The conference’s final day will start with a presentation on digital transformation and innovation, followed by the panel discussion “Digital Transformation in shipping: Is the pace fast enough?” moderated by Despina Panayiotou Theodosiou, CEO of Tototheo Maritime and President Wista International.

Next is the hot topic of “Is Seafarers’ welfare in jeopardy?” with panellists from BIMCO, the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) and the International Labour Office.