Oslo-Based Shipping Conference & Exhibition Expected To Be Largest In Years June 11-14 With the settling of hositilities in the Persian Gulf, the shipping community is once again able to turn its attention to such critical marine industry issues as ship finance, environmental and safety considerations, global tonnage demand, ship management and double-hull tanker pros and cons. And it appears that Nor-Shipping '91, a biennial international shipping and maritime offshore exhibition and conference held in Oslo, will provide a major forum for the shipping community to not only air its views, but also to examine the latest marine technology, products and services.

"Nor-Shipping is a melting pot and a meeting point—not only at the exhibition, but at private meetings in Oslo as well," said Jon W.

Thomas, project manager for the Norwegian Trade Fair Foundation, organizers for the conference and exhibition. "We are confident that this year's Nor-Shipping will be much larger than in 1989," added Aerial view showing the outskirts of Oslo, with the Sjolyst Exhibition Center, site of Nor-Shipping 91, in the foreground.

Mr. Thomas.

Nor-Shipping, which has been scheduled for June 11-14, 1991, in Oslo, Norway, at the Sjolyst Exhibition Center, is being held for the 13th time.

Oslo and Norway in general provide an excellent backdrop for the event because of the resurgence of the country's position in the world shipping community. According to the latest figures released by the Norwegian Shipowners Association, Norwegian shipowners now own or operate one of the world's largest merchant fleets. The fleet under Norwegian ownership stands at about 1,550 vessels totaling 55 million deadweight tons. An additional 300 or so vessels on time charter or under management contracts increases the total number of vessels to 1,870 or about 68 million deadweight tons under Norwegian control.

"The establishment of the Norwegian International Ship register, the NIS, in July 1987, coupled with freedom to use foreign flags, has given our shipping companies latitude in choice and action—both essential to profitability," said Hanne K. Aaberg, information officer for the Norwegian Shipowners' Association.

"The results have astonished even the optimists," continued Ms. Aaberg, "because the NIS has been an unqualified success." The strong resurgence of Norwegian shipping is reflected in the fact that, for the first time, a separate national pavilion for Norway's maritime industry is being organized at the exhibition. Arranged by the Norwegian Trade Council under the slogan "Norway Your Maritime Partner," this pavilion will house about 150 exhibiting companies covering a broad array of shipping related products and services. The pavilion, the largest at Nor-Shipping, will cover over 3,500 square meters or 25 percent of the total exhibition area.

Participants range from manufacturers of ship equipment to shipbrokers and the Norwegian maritime authorities, successfully illustrating the breadth of the country's shipping environment.

"Our function has been to act as a catalyst," said Jan Spilleth, the Norwegian Trade Council's coordinator for the joint Nor-Shipping pavilion.

"This display brings together the key players and shows the striking power deployed by the Norwegian maritime environment in the international market." According to Mr. Thomas and Mari Astrup Glittenberg, information manager for the Norwegian Trade Fair Foundation, in a recent interview, this year's event is expected to employ five display halls— about 15,000 square meters—as compared with three halls at Nor- Shipping '89. Mr. Thomas was also quick to point out that the number of national pavilions for Nor-Shipping '91 has almost doubled from the 1989 exhibition—this year's event has 17 national pavilions, up from 9 pavilions two years ago. In all, more than 600 companies from 30 to 35 countries are expected to be exhibiting. The expanded exhibition is expected to draw more visitors than the 8,000 that attended in 1989.

Mr. Thomas said the success of the show is a direct reflection of the upturn in the marine market. He said that one would have to go back several years to find a response as positive as this one.

Furthermore, Mr. Thomas also indicated that, although some companies had hesitated confirming their Nor-Shipping exhibits because of the Persian Gulf War, many are now committed. "It appears that international shipping feels able to plan for the future with greater confidence," said Mr. Thomas.

Another first at the exhibition is the joint U.S. display under the aegis of the Shipbuilders Council of America.

According to Richard Thorp, SCA vice president of export activities and research, five U.S. marine equipment suppliers, members of the association's allied industries group, will exhibit at Nor-Shipping.

The group will include Lake Shore, Inc. (deck machinery), Hopeman Brothers, Jamestown Metal (both accommodation and joiner work suppliers), Bird-Johnson (propellers) and General Electric (marine gas turbine engines).

"The Shipbuilders Council has become more proactive than it was 10 years ago," said Mr. Thorp. "It is more likely that our allied industry group members will make the first in-roads into the international market. Its our goal for our shipyards to follow." Mr. Thorp believes that Nor-Shipping is the most suitable forum for exposing this type of equipment. "Nor-Shipping has been for years the show for commercial shipping and shipbuilding. It's where the clients are," he added.

Mr. Thorp was also quick to point out that Sperry Marine, one of the most successful U.S. marine equipment suppliers, will also have its own exhibit at Nor-Shipping. Sperry Marine was recently one of 20 U.S.

companies selected by the Commerce Department for special Federal trade assistance to develop the Japanese market. The companies were selected based on their ability to make long-term commitments to stay in the Japanese market.

As for the Nor-Shipping Conference, its central themes will be environmental concerns affecting the shipping industry, associated pressures for improvements in management quality and ship finance.

At the first session, "Finance- Where Now for Oslo," on Wednesday morning, June 12, one of the topics under discussion will be the lessons learned from Norway's limited partnership (K/S) market.

Arguments for and against the Oslo international stock exchange will also be the subject of debate.

Topics in the afternoon session, "Markets: Is the Pessimism Justified?" include global tonnage demand after the Persian Gulf War and the commercial argument for and against double-hull tankers.

Trading opportunities for the dry bulk fleet, the outlook for secondhand tonnage, and an assessment of ship repair capacity for an aging fleet will also be discussed.

The second day will be dominated by environmental and safety considerations, starting with a morning session entitled "Shipping and the Environment: Is a New Attitude Needed?".

IMO legislation, the possible counter-productive effects of overregulation, meeting the shoreside challenge and the cost of "greener" shipping will be debated.

On Thursday afternoon, June 13, under the session "Quality Management— Who Sets the Standards?" speakers will examine the issues of prime class tonnage, as well as the roles of the charterers, owners, manager and schools.

"Green" issues will also be raised in the final technical session on Friday morning, June 14, which starts with a look at technological solutions to environmental problems.

Other timely topics under consideration include vessel life extension, shipbuilding automation, and future ship design.

Nor-Shipping Conference Program (As of press time) Wednesday. June 12. Morning Session "Finance: Where Now for Oslo?" Chairman: Jens Ulltveit-Moe, chairman, Ulltveit Gruppen "K/S: The Lessons Learned," speaker to be announced.

"The Oslo Stock Exchange: For and Against." (A) "Why International Shipping Needs the Exhange," by Bjorn Ronneberg, managing director, Eikland A/S.

(B) "The Oslo Shipping Bors—The Jury is Out," by Charles Drury, director, County NatWest Ltd.

The Debate—Panel Discussion. Panellists will include: Geir Jansen, managing director, Danish Investment Foundation; Mr. Ronneborg, Mr.

Drury, and representatives from Finanshuset.

Afternoon Session Chairman: Paul Vogt, chairman, Baltic Exchange "A Global Supply/Demand Overview in the Light of the Gulf Situation," by Dan Jessel, managing director, Maritime Strategies.

"Double Hull Tankers: Will Freight Rates Justify the Investment?" speaker to be announced.

"Trading: Opportunities for the Dry Bulk Fleet," speaker to be announced.

"The S&P Market: What (is the) Price (for) Old Ships Now?" by Christen Wikborg, director, corporate finance, Fearnley Group (UK) Ltd.

"The Aging Fleet and Ship Repair Capacity," by M.S. Tan, managing director, Sembawang Shipyard Ltd.

Thursday. June 13. Morning Session "Shipping and the Environment; Is a New Attitude Needed?" Chairman: Representative from IMO be announced.

"IMO: New and Pending Legislation," representative from IMO to be announced.

"Over Regulation is Counter Productive," by Bob Bush, manager fleet operations, Universe Tank Ships USA.

"Meeting the Shoreside Challenge," speaker to be announced.

"The Costs for Greener Shipping," by Chris Horrocks, International Chamber of Shipping.

Thursday. June 13. Afternoon Session "Quality Management: Who Sets the Standards?" Chairman: John Spruyt, consultant, Spruyt & Co.

"Safety and Quality Management in Shipping. The Role of a Classification Society," by Sten Bengtson, vice president, and head of department for quality and safety management, Det norske Veritas.

"The Charterers?" representative from Shell International Marine to be announced.

'The Owners?" by Bjorn Wihelmsen, I.M. Skaugen and council member, Intertanko.

"The Managers?" by Captain Joachim Meyer, managing director, Hanseatic Shipping Company Limited.

"The Schools?" by Professor Moreby, Institute of Marine Studies Polytechnic South West.

Friday, Jung 14, Morning Session "Technical" Chairman: Stein Thor Verle, president, Det norske Veritas Classification A/S.

"Technical Solutions to Environmental Problems," by Mr. Goodrich, managing director, British Maritime Technology.

"When is Life Extension Practical," speaker to be announced.

"Shipbuilding Production: Are there Limits on Automation?

Ship Operation and Marine Information Technology," by Cato Sverdup, Burmeister & Wain Shipyards.

"Ship Designs: The New Thinking for a New Decade," by Per Lindemalm, Saltech Consultants.

Other stories from May 1991 issue


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