The role of the Port of Colombo in facilitating imports and exports and supporting trade with India and other subcontinent countries was expounded upon by Colombo International Container Terminals (CICT) in a recent presentation to the 2017 Asian Logistics and Maritime Conference (ALMC).
The presentation was made by CICT Chief Business Development Officer Tissa Wickramasinghe during a panel discussion of the conference, which was part of the Hong Kong Maritime Week programme.
Wickramasinghe’s presentation explored aspects of the Port Value Chain and the importance of the port of Colombo to its stakeholders including clients, other users, the industry, and to the entire South Asian region.
At the panel discussion, CICT identified the port as a transshipment hub located strategically in the Indian Subcontinent (ISC), East Africa and Middle East regions serving specific markets and supply chains. Wickramasinghe’s presentation drew similarities between the role played by Sri Lanka to the Indian subcontinent and the role played by Hong Kong to China.
He also stressed on the importance of establishing green supply chains for the South Asian region and how the Port of Colombo and CICT contribute to this goal.
Known as Asia’s largest conference for logistics and maritime services users and providers, the ALMC forum hosted more than 2,000 industry elites and eminent speakers from over 30 countries and regions this year.
The conference focused on three timely topics including China’s ‘One Belt, One Road’ initiative, e-commerce, and big data. Four distinctive forums to examine subjects on logistics, supply chain management, maritime, and air freight were part of the agenda.
The keynote speakers at the forum were People’s Republic of China Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Chief Executive GBM, GBS Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor, Hong Kong Trade Development Council Executive Director Margaret Fongand Thailand Transport Minister Arkhom Termpittayapaisith.
Other panellists included Hong Kong Shippers’ Council Executive Director JP, FCILT Sunny Ho, Contship Italia Group Marketing and Corporate Communication Director Daniele Testi, Yantian Hutchison Ports Commercial Department General Manager Carman Leung, Hutchison Port Holdings Limited Group Managing Director Eric Ip, SeaIntel Maritime Analysis CEO and Partner Alan Murphy, Ocean Network Express CEO Jeremy Nixonand BIMCO Chief Shipping Analyst Peter Sand.
An exhibition was held alongside the conference, featuring more than 120 exhibitors, showcasing professional and comprehensive logistics and maritime services and solutions.
The ALMC forum held for the seventh time this year is a platform for authorities on logistics and transportation and marine to examine perceptions and theories to advance expertise on transportation, logistics, cargo, maritime and shipping.
CICT, which commenced operations in July 2013, manages the Colombo South Terminal of the Port of Colombo, the first and currently the only deep water terminal in South Asia equipped with facilities to handle the largest vessels afloat. The commencement of CICT’s operations is widely credited as the factor in the Port of Colombo achieving double digit growth in 2014 after a lapse of over ten years.
In just three years of operation, CICT has brought some of the largest vessels plying the Asia-Europe routes to Colombo. Of these, Milan Maersk (20,568 TEU), MSC Maya (19,224 TEU), Mogens Maersk (18,300 TEU), MSC New York (16,652 TEU), CMA CGM Marco Polo (16,020 TEU), Edith Maersk and EMC Thalassa Hellas (each 14,000 plus TEUs) and their sister vessels are now regular callers at CICT.