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Conference Programme 2019

Event Overview


The fifth annual The Maritime Standard Ship Finance and Trade Conference will be held at the Sofitel Abu Dhabi Corniche on 6th November 2019. It will seek to build on the reputation for quality information sharing and networking earned over the past four years.

In 2018 the Conference attracted a high-quality audience of around 150 executives and decision makers from across the industry. They assembled to discuss and debate the key issues and trends facing the shipping and ports market in the Middle East and the Indian Subcontinent, with a particular focus on financial issues. The audience heard from some of the best-known personalities in the business, all leaders in their chosen fields, who highlighted the importance of building partnerships to help accelerate investment-led growth within the industry.

Wednesday 6th November 2019

Conference Programme Outline


Registration and welcome refreshments


Welcome by

Clive Woodbridge
Conference Chairman & Editor, The Maritime Standard

Inaugural Address by

Trevor Pereira
Managing Director, The Maritime Standard


Keynote Addresses

  • H.E. Eng. Ahmed Mohamed Sharif Al Khoori, Director General,Federal Transport Authority- Land & Maritime
  • Capt. Abdulkareem Al Masabi, CEO, ADNOC Logistics & Services
  • Capt. Mohamed Juma Al Shamisi, CEO, Abu Dhabi Ports

Session 1: Accentuating the positive – how to take advantage from regional and global trade trends

  • The changing world trade order – what lies in store and how can the maritime sector best position itself for long term success?
  • China’s One Belt, One Road – tapping into a once in a generational opportunity
  • Does oil supply volatility open up more opportunities than challenges?
  • Taking a port perspective – where should investment be focused at a time of rapid change and transformation?
  • Tanker operators see light at the end of the tunnel
  • Container shipping lines’ regional investment decisions start shaping opportunities
  • Profitably financing the shipping industry at a time of political and economic change
  • Indian coastal shipping – liberalising a market with huge potential
  • Inland transportation – using new technology to increase speed and reduce cost


Ali Shehab
Acting CEO,
Kuwait Oil Tanker Company

Chris Peters

Zhang Wei
Assistant General Manager,
Industrial and Commercial Bank of China Limited (ICIC)

Capt. S.R. Patnaik
International Shipping & Logistics

Bobby Varghese
Vice President- Financial Strategy,
Abu Dhabi Ports


Panel Discussion/Question & Answer Session




Session 2: Developing future proof solutions

  • Will the industry turn more to mergers and acquisitions to secure future stability?
  • How can shipowners and operators chart a viable course through challenging environmental waters?
  • Attracting inward investment – a case study of success
  • Digitalisation and AI – is the industry keeping pace with emerging new technology?
  • Hyperloop technology – progress report on a potential game changer
  • Should the financial services sector be taking a longer-term view of shipping and maritime?
  • Multimodal rail and road transport – integrating shipping and port services with landside logistics
  • The automotive trades – catering to the needs of a fast-changing sector


Andrew Simmons
Global Marine Transport

Vijay Kamath
Regional Head,
North Star Asia Maritime Pte. Ltd. (NSAM)

Nitin Mehta
Tomini Shipping

George Giannakis
Managing Director,

Capt. Harihar Prasad
Managing Director,
McQuilling Shipping Services

Christopher James Thomas
ADNOC Logistics & Services

Panel Discussion/Question & Answer Session


Refreshment Break


Session 3 – Breaking down the barriers to greater shipping and finance industry collaboration

  • Chinese banks and financial services – presenting exciting new options for regional shipping and ports investment?
  • Islamic Finance tools- how can they be adapted to better meet today’s shipping industry requirements
  • Does the industry need new financing tools for the next investment cycle?
  • What role do specialist insurers and maritime lawyers have in bridging the gap
  • Recent newbuilding projects – case studies in good collaboration
  • Alternative financing methods – will they usher in a new era?
  • Funding new road, rail and inland waterway services.


K. B. Chandramouli,
Director- Shipping, Aviation,
Faber Capital

Richard Briggs
Vice Chairman, EMAC,
Partner, Hadef & Partners

Nabil Azzouz
Senior Manager-Marine,
Abu Dhabi National Insurance Company

Tien Tai

Nijoe Joseph
Stephenson Harwood

Panel Discussion/Question & Answer Session


Networking Reception



Download the full conference schedule here


Ksenia ZudinovaKsenia ZudinovaExecutive Director,
Emirates Zone
It was a pleasure to see that the most important people from the industry were here. It was a very good networking event, allowing us to meet new people. This is very important for us and our clients.
Waleed Al tamimiWaleed Al tamimiGeneral Manager,
Emirates Clasification Society (TASNEEF)
This is the first time I have attended the conference and I was very impressed with the quality level of the attendees and speakers and also the size of the room that allowed so many people to participate today. There were a lot of excellent speakers who gave us a good picture about getting the right finance for your business, which was useful.
Andrew SimmonsAndrew SimmonsCEO
Global Marine Transport Capital LLC
The Ship Finance and Trade Conference is always very enjoyable and interesting. Being a finance guy, it’s great to sit and listen to presentations about ports and other kinds of infrastructure projects.
Capt. S. R. PatnaikCapt. S. R. PatnaikCEO,
International Shipping & Logistics
I found it to be a very good conference, well organised, with excellent speakers and a variety of topics. I would absolutely recommend it to anyone in the business.
Tien TaiTien TaiPartner
I really enjoyed the morning session. A wide range of topics were discussed and quite pertinent issues affecting the shipping industry were all raised.
Fazel A. FazelbhoyFazel A. FazelbhoyCEO,
Synergy Offshore
The One Belt One Road discussion evoked a lot of reactions. Clearly there are some very positive aspects, but there is also a downside and some risks involved. I was glad that the audience and the panelists were actually engaging in this topic and debating what are the potential issues involved. TMS always does a wonderful job of rounding up the creme de la creme of the industry, so it was great to be there.
Flemming JensenFlemming JensenCEO,
DTA Ship Agency
A particularly fresh element of the agenda was the fact you had Hyperloop giving us a presentation showing us what the future is going to bring. This demonstrated very clearly that you get onboard or you get left behind.
Bora BarimanBora BarimanHead of the Energy & Marine segment,
National Bank of Fujairah
What I enjoyed about this event was the fact that the panels brought together quite unique viewpoints. The panels comprised bankers, management consultants, vessel operators, engineers and law firms, for example, and this really lent itself to a very rich discussion that examined problems from all perspectives.
Ali ShehabAli ShehabGlobal Director, DNV
This is the fourth event that has been held in the UAE capital Abu Dhabi and this is an important milestone. It's important also to see the support of the UAE authorities, like Abu Dhabi Ports, and other stakeholders to make this event successful.
Giovanni MoscatelliGiovanni MoscatelliPartner & Managing Director,
The Boston Consulting Group
The takeaway for me was that now ship finance is not an isolated sector, but one where there is a willingness to gather together operators, ports, regulators, ship finance and the banks together into a system. Otherwise it will be very difficult to face the future.
Jesper KjaedegaardJesper KjaedegaardPartner,
Mercator International
We heard that lending institutions are looking at the future slightly more positively perhaps than they were a couple of years ago. The session on ship finance was very upbeat; perhaps not quite full steam ahead yet, but I would say the wheels are running again in the industry. This is an event that is extremely valuable to this region because it's probably the only chance where we can all get together in one room - financial people, ship owners and fund managers - which is very important.
Bobby VargheseBobby VargheseSenior Vice Persident - Group Finance, Abu Dhabi Ports
For me the discussion on climate change was a really important topic. Most of the participants were concerned about it and while IMO 2020 is a challenge there are opportunities as well, the conference is a great opportunity to meet people and understand the trends in the industry. I really love being here.
Michael SavvaMichael SavvaPartner,
Watson Farley Williams
I always enjoy coming to this conference and it's great to see the main industry players in the region both on the financing side and the owner's side. It was also extremely pleasant to hear more positive sentiments about the market this year than previously.
Pawan SahniPawan SahniBusiness Development Manager DNV
This was my first time at the Ship Finance and Trade Conference, and it was very impressive. The number of delegates who have come in, with people from across the industry, made it very valuable. All the sessions were really good with great questions from the audience as well.
Eduardo FonsecaEduardo FonsecaAmbassador
of the Republic of Panama to UAE
TMS events provide a space where you can engage and speak about issues outside of work and create those relationships which are really vital in the region. That's the best value added that TMS conferences have. Having the thought leaders driving change and growth here and in one venue is immensely valuable.
Vivek SethVivek SethMD,
Midgulf Projects & Services
I found the presentations to be extremely stimulating. I particularly enjoyed hearing about the Hyperloop and how this could be a major disruptor in logistics going forward.The benefit of being here is getting to know what new is happening in the market, getting to meet new people and sharing similar and dissimilar ideas, because that's what stimulates a good discussion.
Capt. Zarir IraniCapt. Zarir IraniConstellation Marine Chairman
It has really been very informative and well attended. We heard a lot of bold presentations about where the money is going to come from and what the colour of the money is going to be. It was a clear statement made by a lot of speakers that the next wave finance is going to be green.

Gold Sponsor
Delegate Lunch
Delegate Bags
Lanyards and Badges
Notepads and Pens
Refreshment Break
Water & Mints
General Sponsor
General Sponsor
Conqueror Freight Network- TMS Ship Finance & Trade Conference 2017
Globalia Logistics Network- TMS Ship Finance & Trade Conference 2017
Media Partners

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