More than 900 guests spent five days in the Congress Center Hamburg (CCH) for the 29th International Association of Ports and Harbours (IAPH) Conference discussing the future of international ports and intelligent ‘Smart’ schemes.
Olaf Merk, Administrator of Ports and Shipping at the OECD’s International Transport Forum presented a study on the repercussions of ultra-large container vessels (ULCVs) and stressed in his lecture that while savings are being derived from containerships of growing size, the costs arising for onward transport and in the hinterland are increasing.
To read a technical paper by Olaf Merk on green port trade-offs, click here
Along with intelligent solutions for port traffic and freight flows, other topics of discussion and debate included the compatibility of the environment and the port business, legal questions related to the port industry, opportunities for and/or derived from the cruise sector, and clean air.
Various excursions in the Port of Hamburg enabled visitors to inspect a number of projects run by the Hamburg Port Authority (HPA) and its partners on the spot and gain a personal idea of the smartPORT.
Jens Meier, Chairman of HPA’s Management Board, said: “SmartPORT is more than just a word – it is a long-term strategy involving firm projects. We aimed with the conference, not just to display visions to our visitors, but to present specific projects. The many interviews that I held in the course of the conference confirmed for me that we had succeeded in doing so.”
The conference itself was underpinned by a varied and vibrant evening program; after the reception in Hamburg’s city hall and the ensuing dinner at the Chamber of Commerce, a voyage into the maritime past followed on Tuesday evening.
Guests at the dinner in the International Maritime Museum had the opportunity to play containership captain on a simulator.