Following the success of
Mare Forum Houston 2002:
A GLOBAL FORUM on the MARITIME TRANSPORTATION OF ENERGY: “IDENTIFYING
THE PRIORITY POLICY ISSUES"
Mare Forum continues with the next edition in New York.
conference is set for:
New York, U.S.A.
Navigating Through a Sea of Change
Toward a Safe, Secure,
Environmentally Sound and Profitable Maritime Industry
a Sea of Change is a Mare Forum conference that aims to tackle the
inhibiting factors which prevent the shipping industry from being
profitable, safe, secure and environmentally sound.
Shipping is an essential industry, that grows with world trade and is
not threatened by alternative modes of transport. Most of it is
operated in a safe and secure fashion, it is technically advanced and
it has made substantial strides in its environmental improvements. But
it continues to be identified with the bad practices of a sub-standard
minority and mostly because the public scarcely knows it is there, is
regarded as a marginal player and well down in the scale of public
estimation. This is reflected in its poor performance in stock markets
and the difficulties it experiences in its attempts to raise capital.
It has scarcely been helped by its traditional volatility , and its
feast to famine record over the years. Over competition, political
interference in the supply-demand situation, the continued presence of
government interests, notably in shipbuilding areas, all contribute to
its failure to present a picture of sustained profitability. Against
this, there are certain strong and flexible companies which continue
to prosper , year on year, free from the short termism that affects
the performance of many of their competitors.
"Leave us alone to get on with the job we do best" is the heartfelt
cry from the shipping industry, against a background which sees so
many difficult issues intruding into the sea transport market. The
shipping practitioner indeed navigates through this "sea of change"
and it is the scale and extent of these changes which in 2003 cause
inordinate concern. Issues of safety and regulation continue to press
in on the industry, despite its substantial statistical safety
improvements. Because of the sub-standard minority the regulator is
Because of a few highly charged accidents , the whole framework of
regulation itself is under threat, with the prospect of regional
prescriptions and a chaotic regulatory patchwork around the world that
would make the work of international shipping companies exceedingly
difficult. A proven and mostly efficient international regulatory
system as represented by the International Maritime Organisation is
under attack. As a result of political action following a few well-publicised
accidents, the shipowner now sees for the first time compulsory age
limits on ships, regardless of condition. He has to cope with
political threats to the international law of the sea. Additionally,
attitudes to flag states are changing , with a more critical view
being taken of the performance of some of these. Are we reaching a
stage when the flag a vessel flies matters again , as an indicator of
quality and of efficient regulatory oversight ?
The sea of change following 9/11 has also become understandably
stormy. The International Ship and Port Facility Security Code also
presupposes a whole range of operational changes which shipowners and
port operators must take on board in the short term, while barely
comprehending the consequences. What will this mean to the smooth
running of the ship and the role of the port and terminal in
expediting its departure ? What will it all cost and how will this be
passed on to the user of transport? In the ISPS Code we are heading
out to sea, but what is over the horizon is distinctly cloudy?
Despite all the economic uncertainties, many of the shipping industry
sectors are showing strong growth and promise, and demonstrating
economic improvement. There are exciting investments taking place in
the LNG , passenger shipping and container sectors, while both dry
bulk and tankers have been exhibiting signs of rude health. But will
this continue apace, and how will the capital providers regard the
future prospects for the industry in a changing world?
Ships are useless without ports , but the ports and terminals
themselves are facing numerous problems, not least their ability to
adapt to new security constraints, which comes on top of demand for
new facilities, for land for new terminals and for deep water for a
new generation of big ships. All this presupposes access to
substantial capital for such investments, which the user would rather
not pay. But port waters, like the sea itself, reflect changing
attitudes, and the old views that port facilities were somehow the
responsibility of the nation state seem very dated in relation to new
ideas of public/private partnerships for investment, along with the
rise of the international port and terminal operating company.
Ports and terminals are increasingly affected by congestion, and the
infrastructural conditions in their hinterlands. Coastal, inland and
short sea shipping are increasingly being offered as a solution for
this landside congestion, and gradually, in a number of locations
around the world the empty sea and waterway is being seen as a viable
alternative. But this is not a simple modal shift, or a response to a
changed government policy, but a long term change that will only occur
if there is a willingness to really invest in coastal shipping and
there is sufficient original thinking in the ports and waterway areas.
There are clearly major opportunities here, whether the congestion on
US N-S trunk routes are being considered, or that around major hubs
are being considered. Can a strategy be developed?
All of these contemporary issues will be covered in this exciting
conference, which will bring together experts from the US and abroad,
to produce a passage plan that will chart the way across the sea of
Identify problem areas within major
marine transportation issues, which must be given management emphasis
by senior government and industry executives in seeking the right
balance of safety, security and environmental protection with
The Forum will examine issues of the day impacting flag and port
states, shipowners, markets, ports and terminals and governments.
These issues include:
business and responsibilities of flag administrations
Trends in Global Commodity Movements,
forecasts - consolidations and newbuildings
Markets & Availability of capital
security implementation, port challenges
Viability of short sea shipping
Attendees will have the opportunity to learn about,
debate and influence the resolution of Forum issues with policy makers
from industry and government.
Mare Forum is noted for its unique program structure and emphasis on
opportunities for attendee participation, with each panel session
including a one hour discussion period along with special discussion
venue for the Conference will be the Hilton Hotel in New York City
located between Central Park and Times Square. The United States is
the world’s largest trading nation with New York as a leading port and
international center for shipping interests and ship finance. Here,
participants will find exceptional business networking opportunities
as well a world class leisure activities.
T. du Moulin
Chairman, Intertanko North American
President, Intrepid Shipping LLC
Admiral Richard Larrabee,
U.S. Coast Guard (Ret.)
Director, Port Commerce Department
Port Authority of New York and New Jersey
Maritime Editor / Commentator, Lloyd's List
Joseph J. Cox
President, Chamber of Shipping of America
van der mast
Member of the Managing Board and Managing Director
NIB CAPITAL BANK
Daniel F. Sheehan
Advisor, Maritime Administration of the Marshall Islands
Vice Chairman of Short Sea Shipping Co-operative, SCOOP
Senior Vice President, American Marine Advisors
Managing Director MARE FORUM B.V.
Robert C. North,
Rear Admiral, U.S. Coast Guard (Ret.)
President, North Star Maritime, Inc.
Mare Forum USA 2004 will stand apart from other conferences
through its format, content and through the level and degree
of interactivity between the participants. Like all
conferences, the ultimate goal of the conference is to
provide a true forum where all participants are invited to
take part in the discussion/ debate periods after every
session of high profile speakers from government and
industry have directly addressed the issues.
We are looking forward to welcoming you to New York,
receive information on the programme and how to register for
MARE FORUM USA 2004:
Maritime Industry - Navigating Through a Sea of Change"
26 & 27
April 2004 - HILTON HOTEL - New York - U.S.A.