The Antwerp Port Authority has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Korea International Trade Association (KITA).
The proposed collaboration was made during the City Trade Mission to Seoul and represents a significant commitment to growth and expansion by the Port of Antwerp. KITA represents 77,000 member companies from Korea’s international trading community.
With the agreement, Antwerp hopes to attract considerably more trade from Korea in future. From KITA’s perspective, they see Antwerp as the entryway to Europe for their exports. Mr. Kim Jungsoo, Executive Managing Director of KITA said, “In 2015 we sent 77,000 TEU of container freight to Antwerp. Trade between Korea and Belgium can and must be expanded, and the Port of Antwerp has a significant role to play here”.
The pact was signed by both Mr. Jungsoo, and the CEO-designate of the Antwerp Port Authority, Jacques Vandermeiren. During the discussions, it was revealed that there is set to be a major focus on promoting the Antwerp logistics network and exchanging information.
The signature of the MoU was followed by a seminar where the Korean attendees were treated to a presentation given by Luc Arnouts, Chief Commercial Officer of Antwerp Port Authority. During this presentation, Arnouts delivered a rousing speech covering the advantages of Antwerp. He also took time to mention the new strategic alliance between Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM) and the 2M network, which has a strong position in Antwerp.
Commenting on this, Arnouts said “”This reinforces us in our belief that in future we will see more cargo coming to the port of Antwerp from Korea.”
The day ended with a Shippers' Dinner. This provided an opportunity for representatives of the Antwerp port companies and their new Korean business relations to network and reflect on what looks to be a very promising agreement.