Global maritime leaders on Tuesday (9 April) gathered at the opening ceremony of Sea Asia 2019 as part of Singapore Maritime Week 2019.
The opening ceremony was attended by Guest of Honour, Dr Janil Puthucheary, Senior Minister of State, Ministry of Transport and Ministry of Communications and Information, Niam Chiang Meng, Chairman of Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore, Andreas Sohmen-Pao, Chairman of Singapore Maritime Foundation, and Chris Hayman, Chairman of Seatrade, Informa Markets.
In his opening remarks at the ceremony, Sohmen-Pao spoke about the relevance of Sea Asia as a platform for maritime leaders to share their expertise and innovations as well as the role Singapore plays to facilitate the exchange of ideas around latest trends and challenges in the industry as a leading maritime centre with a supportive and responsive government.
In his address, Senior Minister of State, Dr Puthucheary, focused on the importance of the maritime industry which continues to carry 90% of global trade today despite facing challenges from players such as Alibaba and Amazon, tighter environmental regulations and increasing competition for talent.
He spoke of the opportunities presented by digital connectivity, encouraged by the development of the electronic Bill of Lading (eBL) built under Singapore’s TradeTrust framework, cleaner shipping and the need for a highly-skilled workforce to future proof the industry for the long term.
This sentiment was echoed by Hayman, who spoke of the platform Sea Asia brings to industry players, to collaborate and address the opportunities as well as challenges posed by digitisation, the global economic outlook and the sulphur cap.
Hayman added that the return of the highly successful Sea Asia Parliamentary Debate on the second day of the conference on 10 April will see global leaders debating the motion: ‘This House believes that too much is expected of the shipping industry on environmental matters’.
The opening ceremony concluded with Dr Puthucheary touring the highlights of the exhibition, which began at Keppel Offshore and Marine, PSA Singapore Terminals, Jurong Port, Sembcorp Marine and wrapping up at the Innovation Arena.
Photo credit: Sea Asia 2019, UBM
Published: 10 April, 2019
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