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Live from Posidonia

Shipping industry gears up for Posidonia 2014

Shipping industry gears up for Posidonia 2014
For sometime it has been claimed Posidonia is the world’s most prestigious shipping exhibition. This is not only because of the exhibition itself, which this year breaks all records, but because of the opportunity shipping people have to meet, assess and discuss the way ahead for the maritime industry.

Posidonia 2014 is set to be officially be opened by Greek Prime Minister, Antonis Samaras 2 June at the Athens Metropolitan Expo, but by then the Posidonia event will have been in full swing for at least a week as thousands of shipping people have descended on Athens for days and many will stay on after the exhibition closes 6 June.

“We are happy to announce that this year’s Posidonia will be the greatest ever and we will try our best to optimise the experience for our exhibitors and visitors and make it as rewarding and as pleasant as possible,” said Theodore Vokos, executive director, Posidonia Exhibitions the organisers of the biennial event when addressing the press 29 May.

Some 400 journalists have registered and many were already here for this conference. The biggest in the event’s 40-year long history the organisers have confirm the 2014 version will set new records in terms of participant countries ­ 93 - and exhibition size just under 40,000sq m and number of companies represented, over 1,850. Open to shipping people only, some 19,000 are expected to visit the event.

George Gratsos, president of the Hellenic Chamber of Shipping, told the media: “Posidonia highlights the impressive achievements of the shipping industry, the shipbuilders who design and build the ships, the engine and equipment manufacturers that make them work efficiently and the port of

Piraeus as the fastest growing Mediterranean’s transhipment hub. Posidonia shows how the private sector can better utilize resources, increasing efficiencies and productivity, producing wealth and employment better than any imaginable ideologically driven alternative.”

As Theodore E. Veniamis, president, Union of Greek Shipowners, said: “Posidonia provides an opportunity to highlight the dynamics of the international shipping industry and the continuing leadership of Greek shipping. Perennial maritime tradition and seamanship coupled with advanced technology provide sustainable shipping services recognised internationally. As Greece is in the process of ending the most testing period in its modern history, economically and socially, Greek shipping could become a key driver

of economic recovery at national level as well as in the context of global prosperity and welfare.”

John C. Lyras, chairman of the Posidonia Coordinating Committee, added: “Posidonia epitomises the continuing achievements of the illustrious Hellenic maritime tradition into modern times. This year it coincides with

our country's presidency of the EU, a telling and fitting coincidence for Europe's premier maritime nation. Also because at last there appears to be light at the end of the tunnel for the sorely tried domestic economy, its citizens and institutions.”

The traditional shipbuilding powers of the Far East are feilding their biggest ever contingent of ship yards at any Posidonia show as they vie for a few precious networking moments with shipowners from Greece and abroad.

And they are not alone; from marine service providers to makers of electronics and software and from lubes and equipment suppliers to manufacturers of engines, bunkers and flag registries, every direct or indirect provider in the shipping supply chain will pay the customary biennial homage to the world’s largest and most renowned maritime trade fair.

They come from every corner of the world and this year in particular companies from the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) have registered a 200% increase with a large number of companies from the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Oman seeking investment and partnership opportunities in Greek shipping assets.

A conference and seminars programme will see government officials, industry analysts, bankers, financiers, shipowners and delegates come together to debate emerging trends and provide insights into the industry’s future.

Posidonia 2014 will see the launching of HEMEXPO (Hellenic Marine Equipment Manufacturers Association), a cluster of 15 Greek equipment manufacturers set on getting Greek-made on the manufacturers’ “Maker List” of shipyards in Asia, particularly Korea.