Experts to discuss ME maritime challenges
Dubai, September 12, 2012
Leading global experts will discuss the key challenges facing Middle East maritime industry in wake of global downturn at the upcoming Seatrade Middle East Maritime exhibition and conference in Dubai.
The sixth edition of the biggest event in the global sea trade calendar takes place from November 27 to 29 at the Dubai International Convention & Exhibition Centre. The three-day event also features an exhibition.
A host of international and regional experts will address the key issues, providing a critical insight into what turbulence lies ahead for international trade and how the regional maritime industry will be affected, said the organisers.
“Globalisation has led to astonishing increases in trade which currently represents 30 per cent of world GDP and is expected to grow to 50 per cent of world GDP by 2020. Therefore if the economy slows, exporters are not immune, which then has a knock-on effect on shipping industry,” remarked Chris Hayman, the chairman of Seatrade.
So far regional trade has been relatively unscathed by the global downturn, with the GCC countries recording a trade surplus estimated at $520 billion last year. This year, a report by Qatar National Bank suggests a lower surplus of $493 billion in 2012, largely due to high oil prices, offset by import growth of around 3.5 per cent.
Broken down, regional heavyweight Saudi Arabia contributed $245 billion, UAE $94 billion and Qatar $79 billion, it added.
“Put into perspective that figure represents about two-thirds of the US’ trade deficit and twice that of China’s surplus, leaving the region’s trade balance in a healthy state. But challenges could be on the horizon and with more than 90 per cent of worldwide trade moving by sea, the shipping industry remains a vital commercial indicator,” said Hayman.
Leading industry experts including Jamal Majid Bin Thaniah, vice chairman of DP World; Sheikh Ali bin Jassim bin Mohammad Al-Thani, CMD of Milaha, Qatar; Sheikh Dr Sabah Al Jaber Al Ali Al Sabah, the general manager of Kuwait Ports Authority, Shaikh Daij bin Salman Al Khalifa, the chairman of Asry (Bahrain); Sheikh Khalil Al-Salmi, deputy CEO of Oman Drydock Company; Ali Obaid Al-Yabhouni, CEO of Adnatco-NGSCO, Abu Dhabi and Saleh Al Jasser, CEO of National Shipping Company of Saudi Arabia (Bahri) will attend.-TradeArabia News Service