Aligned with the goals set out in Saudi Vision 2030, the event is set to revolutionise the shipping and logistics sectors in the Kingdom and the GCC.
Dammam_ Saudi Arabia_20th September 2023
Heldunder the patronage of the Ministry of Transport and Logistic Services, the 4th edition of Saudi Maritime Congress – the Kingdom’s largest and most important global maritime event – successfully opened its doors today at the Dhahran Expo in Dammam, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. H.E. Omar Hariri, President, MAWANI and Eng. Ahmed Al Subaey, CEO, Bahri officially inaugurated the opening ceremony with keynote addresses at the two-day event. The event is supported by founding strategic partners, Bahri & Seatrade Maritime, with main partners, MAWANI & Transport General Authority (TGA), and strategic partners Saudi Aramco and IMI.
Abdulrahman Matooq Al-Thonayan, Deputy for Maritime Transport at the Transport General Authority, stated that the Saudi Maritime Conference, now in its fourth edition, is being held at a time when the maritime transport industry is experiencing significant changes and developments. “This underscores the importance of keeping pace with these changes and enhancing cooperation and collaboration among all countries worldwide to achieve common goals in this critical industry. The conference will also address pressing issues and tackle the challenges facing the maritime sector in Saudi Arabia.”
Al-Thonayan highlighted that the conference serves as a crucial platform, bringing together key regional technological companies in the maritime sector to showcase their latest products and services to conference attendees and visitors, thus adding value to the event and its accompanying exhibition.
Taking place at Dhahran Expo, Dammam, KSA, until 21st September, Day one saw two strategic Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) deals signed on the show floor from Bahri and from MAWANI and delegates flooded into the conference room to hear insightful speakers discuss and debate the industry’s most pertinent topics.
Chris Morley, Group Director, Seatrade Maritime, organisers of the event, said: “Day one has been what we hoped for and more. We were anticipating a great daybased on the pre-registration figures which far exceeded previous editions. The event has been really exciting and reflects the eagerness of the global industry to be part of Saudi Arabia’s commitment to developing its maritime trade and doing business on an international scale.”
Morley added: “Not only has Saudi Arabia scored the highest regional progress in the Maritime Connectivity Index in 2021, it is ranked 20th globally in the maritime transport industry, while its maritime sector has doubled in the past decade. 53,000 ships operate within its borders, and are registered in 150+ countries and carry 11 billion tonnes of cargo annually. This makes the Kingdom a powerful and promising partner for more regional and global trade, showing a level of alignment with the wider maritime industry is required, as it is changing and inching closer to new ways of working and trading.”
Outlook for investment and business in the region
Day Two of the conference agenda promises to be no less impactful with the day starting with a deep dive on energy transition and the strategy for sustainability in the region.With a view of keeping its hydrocarbon industry relevant, the Kingdom is putting a greater focus on developing a circular carbon economy (CCE), which essentially seeks to reduce, reuse, recycle and remove carbon.
Saudi Aramco has also set its own net zero target for 2050, a decade ahead of the state. Aramco recently published its inaugural sustainability report, outlining ways the company plans to achieve Scopes 1 and 2 greenhouse gas emission cut across wholly owned operated assets by 2050. These include the capturing, utilizing, and storing of 11 million metric tons of CO2 equivalent annually by 2035, the generation of 12 GW of solar and wind power by 2030, and reducing upstream carbon intensity by at least 15% by 2035. The company aims to produce 11 million tons of blue ammonia annually by 2030.
Work is also ongoing in the country’s sole green hydrogen and ammonia projects at Neom, which are being viewed as a future benchmark for the region and beyond- given its scale and built-in offtake. Execution of the $54 billion scheme is proceeding with financial close due by year end.
Tackling industry developments and opportunities
Discussing developments and opportunities for key partners in this field will be H.E Eng. Essam M. Alammari, VP Advisor – Regulation Sector, TGA; Majed Al-Thubaiti, Manager of SAF Area Producing Support, Saudi Aramco; Abdullah Alyami, VP, Ship Management, Bahri Ship Management; Dr. Ahm Mehbub Anwar, Research Lead, Transport & Infrastructure, KAPSARC; Jamal Al Ali, Middle East Regional Commercial & Business Development Director, Bureau Veritas Marine & Offshore ad Gina Panayiotou, ESG Manager, West of England Insurance Services. Moderating the session is Martin Craford-Brunt, CEO, Lookout Marine.
Morley added: “Seatrade Maritime, along with our partners, are delighted to provide a platform for this sector to do business on the exhibition floor and gather knowledge from the conference programme which includes Vision2030 and its objectives set out for the maritime & logistics sectors, as well as all areas of Saudi Arabia’s growth plans. We are already planning for our return in 2025 with the 5th edition!”
Complementing the programme is a bustling exhibition with companies which include Bahri; MAWANI; IMI; King Abdullah Port; Saudi Global Ports Co; Saudi Aramco; Bass Global Marine Services; Grandweld; Hong Kong Marine Department; Naghi Marine Company; ASRY and many more.
Entry to the exhibition and to attend the conference programme is free upon registration: Saudi Maritime Congress 2023 (visitcloud.com)