CASA Mobile App being launched by Ports, Shipping and Aviation Minister Nimal Siripala De Silva while CASA Public Relations and Publicity Committee Chairman Shane De Alwis (second from left), and CASA Chairman and Hayleys Advantis Deputy Managing Director Shano Sabar look on
Token of appreciation being presented to the Chief Guest
|Chief Guest Ports, Shipping and Aviation Minister Nimal Siripala De Silva|
|CASA Chairman and Hayleys Advantis Deputy Managing Director Shano Sabar|
|Keynote speech by IFC Chief Investment Officer and Transport and Logistics Asia Pacific Region Sector Lead Kamal Dorabawila|
The CASA Maritime Conference 2023 was held on 24 October at the Kings Court Cinnamon Lakeside focusing on the theme ‘Embarking towards a blue horizon: Exploring possibilities for the Sri Lankan maritime community’ celebrating World Maritime Day 2023 and its theme ‘Marpol at 50’.
The event was addressed by CASA Chairman Shano Sabar and Chief Guest for the event, Minister of Ports, Shipping and Aviation Nimal Siripala de Silva. While speaking at the event the Minister recalled Sri Lanka’s rich maritime history and went on to emphasise on prioritising the local investors when awarding projects in the maritime industry.
The keynote was delivered by International Finance Corporation Chief Investment Officer and Asia Pacific Region Transport and Logistics Sector Lead Kamal Dorabawila. During his keynote speech, Dorabawila highlighted the importance of using sustainability linked financing instruments in funding the growth of the shipping industry. He highlighted the renewable energy potential of Sri Lanka and explained how the country can produce zero carbon bunker fuels to be used by ships.
The three key focus areas of the conference were; ‘Marpol at 50 Our commitment goes on’; ensuring that the maritime sector delivers cargo safely and in an environmentally sustainable manner. The second session focused on ‘Unlocking the potential of the blue economy’ – how the development of the maritime industry would help the Sri Lankan economy unlock its true potential. And finally, the third session was on ‘Policies for a vibrant, thriving and competitive maritime sector – Future proof SL’s maritime proposition through policy, innovation and digitalisation’.
The green transition of the maritime industry from a terminal perspective
The first session of the day was on the lines of ‘Marpol at 50 Our commitment goes on’; ensuring that the maritime sector delivers cargo safely and in an environmentally sustainable manner. The speaker for the session was Company of Master Mariners Sri Lanka President and Hayleys Advantis Ltd. Board Director Capt. Lasitha Cumaratunga.
In his speech Capt. Cumaratunga emphasised the role CASA members should play in preventing maritime disasters through fulfilling safety related requirements such as safe packing, stowing and handling. He suggested a cycle of communication between the agents, principals and the Government in this regard.
Afterwards, the panel discussion comprised of Marine Environment Protection Authority Chairman Asela Rekawa, Merchant Shipping Secretariat Director Navigation Capt. Upul Peiris, Senior Deputy Harbour Master Capt. Lakshi Siwaratne, and Capt. Lasitha Cumaratunga. This session was moderated by Hemas Transportation Ltd. Director – Growth and International Expansion and Evergreen Shipping Agency Sri Lanka Vice President Ricky Barnett.
Unlocking the potential of the blue economy
Post-lunch session which was conducted in collaboration with Youngship Sri Lanka titled “Unlocking the potential of the Blue Economy – How the development of the Maritime Industry would help the Sri Lankan economy unlock its true potential” saw Standard Chartered Bank Chief Executive Officer Bingumal Thewarathanthri giving a very detailed presentation on the current state of the economy and what the near future holds. He spoke of three enablers to unlock the potential of the blue economy namely; Policy Consistency, Land Reforms and Digitalisation.
The panel discussion which followed comprised of Ceylon Petroleum Corporation Chairman, Petroleum Development Authority of Sri Lanka Member of the Board, Colombo Port City Economic Commission Member, Ceylon Petroleum Storage Terminals Ltd. Chairman Saliya Wickramasuriya, Ocean Lust Magazine Editor in Chief Ayesh Indranath Ranawaka, Management Consultant Mangala Yapa, United Nations Development Program Sri Lanka Senior Consultant Dr. Vagisha Gunasekara, and International Finance Corporation Chief Investment Officer and Asia Pacific Region Sector Lead for Transport and Logistics Kamal Dorabawila, along with the speaker of the session Bingumal Thewarathanthri.
The session was moderated by Freight Sector Chief Operating Officer, Aitken Spence Shipping Business Development, Maritime Freight and Logistics Sectors Assistant Vice President Dhashma Karunaratne, and Meridian Maritime Services Ltd. Director Operations and Youngship Sri Lanka Chairperson Maleena Awn.
Policies for a vibrant, thriving and competitive maritime sector
Moving onto the final session of the conference, organised in collaboration with WISTA Sri Lanka it mainly focused on “Policies of a vibrant, thriving and competitive maritime sector – Future proof Sri Lanka’s maritime proposition through policy, innovation and digitalisation.” For this unique and timely session the speaker was McLarens Holdings Group Managing Director Shehara De Silva. She did an informative comparison of Sri Lanka with the Global Landscape and the Regional Landscape and highlighted the importance of transitioning from a paper based port to a more digitally integrated port.
The subsequent panel discussion comprised of University of Sri Jayewardenepura Faculty of Engineering Head Department of Mechanical Engineering Dr. Dulini Mudunkotuwa, Policy and Political Advisor Saliya Weerakoon, CHEC Port City Colombo Ltd. Deputy Managing Director Thulci Aluvihare, Subashini Abeysinghe, and the final session was moderated by Hayleys Energy Services Lanka Ltd. Deputy Managing Director, SBU Head and Youngship and WISTA Sri Lanka Executive Committee Member Aruni Wijepala, and GAC Shipping Ltd. Senior Manager and WISTA Sri Lanka Executive Committee Member Anjalika Perera.
Following the conclusion of the conference CASA hosted the speakers, panellists and participants for a networking session with wine and finger foods. A special thank you was extended to Hayleys Advantis, the Network Sponsor for sponsoring the session.
Sponsors of the event were Colombo Logistics, CWT Globelink, GAC and McLarens Group, Main Sponsors, and co-Sponsors Aitken Spence Maritime, CL Synergy Ltd., Evergreen Shipping Agency Lanka, SAGT and Salota International.
The Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Aviation and the Sri Lanka Ports Authority endorsed the CASA Maritime Conference while the International Maritime Organization authorised the use of their logo and theme for World Maritime Day.
Pix by Ruwan Walpola