Patrick Verhoeven is Secretary General of the European Community Shipowners’ Associations (ECSA). Based in Brussels, the organisation represents the national shipowner associations of the EU and Norway. Prior to joining ECSA in August 2013, Patrick served thirteen years as Secretary General of the European Sea Ports Organisation and seven years representing the interests of terminal operators, ship agents and silo companies at EU level. He started his career working for the Antwerp-based ship agent Grisar & Velge. Patrick holds a PhD in applied economics and a bachelor in law from the University of Antwerp. In 2015 he joined the university's Centre for Maritime and Air Transport Management (C-MAT) as guest lecturer. Patrick lives in Antwerp with his wife and three children.
David Wood is a partner in Gibson Dunn’s Brussels office. He has specialised in antitrust for over 25 years and has been based in Brussels for the majority of this time, having held senior positions in the antitrust enforcement division of the Competition Directorate General of the European Commission, including Head of the Financial Services Unit and Acting Head of the Media Unit. He has extensive experience across the full range of antitrust issues, including cartels, merger control, abuse of dominance, restrictive agreements, sector inquiries and private enforcement.
David Wood has particularly strong sectoral expertise in the transport and transport infrastructure sectors. As a Commission official, he was a key figure in the application of the competition rules to liner conferences, multimodal transport and port access, as well as with respect to the development of a regulatory regime for liner consortia. Since leaving the Commission in 2002, he has continued to advise on competition law and a wide range of transport issues.
David Wood also has experience across a broad range of industries, such as financial services and media/high-tech, pharmaceutical and consumer electronics. Mr Wood is consistently recognised as a leading European antitrust practitioner by peer review publications such as Best Lawyers, Chambers Global, Chambers Europe, EMEA Legal 500, Global Competition Review and IFLR. He is a member of the editorial board of Competition Law Insight.
Hon. Joe Mizzi is Malta’s Minister for Transport and Infrastructure. A member of the Malta Labour Party, he was first elected as an MP in 1987.
Mizzi started his career working as a Technician/Operator in the Computer Room based on a ship dedicated to Seismic Surveys (Oil Exploration) in the Maltese territory between 1971 and 1972.
Later, he was engaged as a Radio Officer on merchant ships where he continued until 1975 when pursued his techniques in the sector of Telecommunications up to 1992, holding the post of Senior Technician with Deutsche Welle Radio.
In 1983 he was entrusted by the Labour Government in assisting the setting up and formation of RTV Ltd, where he later served for a number of years as the Technical Director, representing the government side.
Henrik Hololei is the D-G for Mobility and Transport in the European Commission. Mr Hololei, who is Estonian, has held a number of positions with the Estonian Government.
Global Trends Affecting Shipping: Keynotes
Märtha Rehnberg is a trained political economist, published expert on 3D printing and public speaker at Dare Disrupt, where she is a partner. She is Co-Founder of Blockchain Labs for Open Collaboration (BLOC), a technology platform that develops blockchain solutions for maritime and energy. Prior, she was responsible for Maersk’s 3D printing initiative, where she worked for 4 years.
Märtha Rehnberg has been selected as a ‘Leader of Tomorrow’ by the St Gallen Symposium for three consecutive years, and profiled as a ‘FemTech Leader’ by Innotribe, the Carlisle & Gallagher Consulting Group and the Digital Finance Institute. She holds a double degree from Copenhagen Business School and Esade. She is multilingual and can execute talks on disruptive innovation and ‘technological intuition’ in Danish, English, French or Swedish.
Alexander Stubb has served as Prime Minister, Finance Minister, Foreign Minister, Trade and Europe Minister of Finland (2008-16). He was a Member of the European Parliament from 2004-2008. Before that, he worked as an expert adviser at the Finnish Ministry for Foreign Affairs and in President Romano Prodi's team at the European Commission. Currently he is a Member of the Finnish Parliament.
Stubb holds a Ph.D. from the London School of Economics and Political Science and he has been a visiting Professor at the College of Europe in Bruges. He speaks Finnish, Swedish, English, French and German.
Mr Jos Delbeke (1954, Belgium) has been the Director-General of the European Commission's Directorate-General for Climate Action since its creation in 2010. He joined the European Commission in 1986.
Mr Delbeke was very involved in the negotiations on the European Union's 2009 policy package on climate change and energy in the European Council and Parliament. He has been a key player in developing EU legislation on cars and fuels, the Emissions Trading System (ETS), air quality, emissions from big industrial installations and chemicals (REACH). Mr Delbeke has been responsible for developing the EU's international climate change strategy and was for many years the European Commission's chief negotiator at the United Nations climate conferences.
Mr Delbeke holds a PhD in economics (1986, Louvain, Belgium) and worked in 1985 at the International Monetary Fund (Washington DC, USA). He has been a lecturer at the University of Louvain on European and international environmental policy since 2013. As an economist, he has always underlined the role of market-based instruments and cost-benefit analysis in the field of the environment.
In 2015, Mr Delbeke co-authored a book entitled "EU Climate Policy Explained", which aims to explain the EU's climate policies in an accessible way.
Global Trends Affecting Shipping: Debate
Kyriakos ( Kerry ) Anastassiadis is the CEO of Celestyal Cruises and the current Chairman of CLIA (Cruise Lines International Association) Europe. Prior to taking the helm at Celestyal Cruises, Kerry distinguished himself as General Manager, CEO and President at renowned corporations such as The Coca-Cola Company, Procter & Gamble, Polaroid and Aujan Industries. Mr. Anastassiadis's mother tongues are Greek and English, and he is also fluent in French, Italian and Portuguese. Born in the Democratic Republic of Congo and raised in Southern Africa, Kerry studied Commerce at the University of Witwatersrand and obtained his postgraduate title in Market Research and Advertising.
Marialaura Dell’Abate graduated at University of Milano-Bicocca in 2014 in Training and Development of HR: in her thesis, she analyzed the role of woman during the generational handover in SMEs.
After few months of internship in a maritime brokers’ office in London, she joined her family company based in Parma, Italy.
Actually working as SnP Advisor for the renewal of some units of the fleet, she spent some time as “training-on-the-job” in several departments (Crewing, Safety, Technical and on-board the Vessels, as well), moving from the Head Quarter of the Company, in Parma, to Rotterdam and Augusta (Sicily), where their operative offices are.
Mark Dickinson is the General Secretary of Nautilus International, the union for maritime professionals in the UK, Netherlands and Switzerland.
Mark is a former seafarer having joined the British Merchant Navy in 1978. In 1983, having secured his Officer of the Watch Certificate and an ONC in Nautical Science he came ashore to study and gained a BSc (Hons) in Maritime Studies at Cardiff University. In 1992, he gained an MSc (Econ) with distinction in Industrial Relations at the London School of Economics (LSE).
Mark has had a 38-year career in the maritime industry and is the elected spokesperson for European Seafarers on the EU Sectoral Social Dialogue Committee on Maritime Transport and occupies a number of positions in the ETF Maritime Transport Section and ITF Seafarers' Section and Fair Practices Committee where he champions the interests of maritime professionals. Nationally Mark is also a member of the TUC General Council, a Trustee Director of the MNOPF and Ensign Retirement Plan, a Trustee of Seafarers UK, the MNWB, MEF/MTT to name but a few of his additional roles and responsibilities.
Bill Hemmings is Director Aviation and Shipping with the European Federation for Transport & Environment. He has worked for T&E since 2008 and is a key speaker on sustainable international transport.
Pierre C Sames holds the position of Group Technology and Research Director at DNV GL. He is responsible for managing the corporate strategic research and technology development projects. His previous experience includes research into hydrodynamic extreme loads, risk analysis, shipping emissions, LNG as ship fuel, rule development and regulatory affairs as well as innovation management. He joined GL in 1995 after studying naval architecture in Hamburg.
Henriette Hallberg Thygesen took the position as Group SVP and CEO for Svitzer A/S in September 2016.
Henriette has been with the A.P. Moller Maersk group since 1994 and has worked primarily within the fields of logistics and energy (Maersk Tankers and Maersk Oil). Henriette’s earlier experience includes roles as Group VP and CEO for Damco Americas, Group VP and CEO for Damco North Asia, Damco Global Process Officer (responsible for customer service, processes, IT and back office operations) as well as prior roles within Strategy and Research.
She holds a Master of Science (Cand.Merc.Mat.), a MBA of international management, a PhD in Applied Mathematics and an Executive MBA “E-MBA Global” (from Columbia University, New York and London Business School).
Henriette is Danish, married and has a 5-year old son.
Maria heads the Marine Trade and Energy Division of Hill Dickinson LLP, which includes responsibility for the global shipping business as well as leading her own PI Regulatory team.
Maria has particular expertise in the cruise, port and offshore sectors, advising on all elements relating to these business from commercial contracts to major casualties. Maria has been involved in a number of high profile cases. She has considerable experience in dealing with regulatory matters and contributes to the industry through various industry committees and Associations.
Panos Laskaridis was born in 1947 and has established Laskaridis Shipping Co.Ltd. in 1977 and Lavinia Corporation in 1978 which developed into a vertically integrated Shipping Group controlling a large Reefer, Bulker, Fish Factory and Tanker Fleet, two shipyards in Spain, fishing and fish trading activities, various agencies, shipbroking and ship operating companies in Europe, the Far East, South America and the USA along with various other shipping related business. He oversees the day to day business of the Group which employs some 3500 people. He has over 40 years experience in shipping and has been involved variously in other Group related business in Leisure, Gaming and Real Estate. He holds a Mechanical Engineering Degree from Braunschweig University in Germany, a Master’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering from Kings College and a Master’s Degree in Naval Architecture from University College in London. He was Chairman of the UK FD+D Club, is since 12 years a member of the Board of the Union of Greek Shipowners, Vice President and President elect of ECSA (European Community Shipowners Associations), a Member of the Committees of all major Classification Societies in Greece, a Member of several Learned Societies, a Member of the Royal Corps of Naval Constructors, a Chartered Engineer and a Fellow of RINA, IMechE and SNAME.
European Shipping Policy: State of Play
Julie Lithgow became the Director of the Institute of Chartered Shipbrokers in September 2011.
Previously she was Head of Business Intelligence at Pole Star Space Applications initially working within intergovernmental liaison for IMO regulation and latterly working with the European Naval Force in the Gulf of Aden as part of the naval response process to vessel attacks on commercial shipping.
Julie was Communications and Marketing Manager for V.Holdings Ltd and had a wide range of senior responsibilities for this major supplier of global marine services. This role followed an extended period of time as Planning and Development Manager of the Nautical Institute, the professional body for qualified seafarers. During this time Julie worked with the committees and members of the Nautical Institute on global projects covering education and training projects. Her earlier career includes management roles in various maritime based companies.
Julie holds a BSc in Maritime Business with Maritime Law from the University of Plymouth and an International Baccalaureate Diploma from St. Clare College, Oxford. She is a member of The Nautical Institute, WISTA, Chatham House, and a Fellow of The Cropper Foundation.
Elvira Deleu is 3rd Officer on Exmar Shipmanagement’s LNG Regassification vessels. She started sailing for Exmar Shipmanagement in 2013. She holds a master in nautical sciences from the Antwerp Maritime Academy. During her studies she was active in the Students Council and SOVO vzw (Social Services for students).
For almost 3 years Elvira is engaged as a board member of the KBZ - Koninklijk Belgisch Zeemanscollege (Royal Belgian Seamanscollege). During her free time she enjoys participating in sailing competitions.
Claus is a senior manager in Deloitte's strategy unit, Monitor Deloitte, in Denmark, and an experienced expert in economic development and growth, both at national and regional level. Claus has been responsible for a number of cluster analysis and studies of growth parameters and advised on growth policies in a number of sectors, including the maritime sector.
Sophie Moonen is head of unit F2 in the European Commission Directorate General for Competition, in charge of state aid control in the area of transport. Prior to 2016, she was the head of the unit in charge of merger control in IT, telecoms and media, and worked on mergers for over 10 years. From 2002 to 2005, she handled antitrust cases in the energy sector. Prior to joining DG Competition, Ms. Moonen practiced law in Brussels and Washington DC (1995 –2002). Ms. Moonen is a law graduate of the University of Liège (Belgium) and holds an LL.M. degree from the University of Michigan (USA).
Mr. Mylly started his maritime career in the Finnish Merchant Shipping 1973. He attended Rauma Maritime College of the Satakunta University of Applied Science, obtaining a Bachelor of Science in maritime studies and qualifying as an Officer and Master Mariner in 1980. He sailed on Finnish ships until 1987 when he joined the Finnish Maritime Administration (FMA).
Mr Mylly held various positions in the FMA between 1987 and 2009. He started as a pilot and then became project manager for vessel traffic service development in the Archipelago Sea. In 1993, he became director of the Bothnian Gulf Maritime District and he moved in 1999 to the FMA headquarters and became head of the traffic department, before becoming Director General in April 2004. He served in this position until the end of 2009 when a merger of Finnish transport agencies took place.
From 2010 to 2012 Mr Mylly acted as a Managing Director and CEO of the Finnish Port Association and in this capacity he represented Finnish Ports in various ESPO committees.
Mr Mylly gained significant experience in cooperation projects in various European countries. He was responsible manager in several EU twinning projects assisting beneficiary countries to develop modern and efficient maritime administration and preparation maritime legislation to meet the EU requirements. He acted as project leader in a number of VTMIS and environmental projects in Bulgaria, Croatia and Estonia from 2003 to 2010.
He was appointed to the position of Executive Director of EMSA in 2012.
Catrien Scheers is chairman of Fast Group and has over 20 years of experience in the breakbulk sector.
After getting her master’s degree, Communication and Media Studies at KU Leuven she began working at the family transport business Fast Lines Belgium. Since she is chairman Fast bought six coaster vessels and invested in Fast Terminals in Drogheda, Ireland. Recently Fast opened its first bulk terminal in the Port of Szczecin.
European Shipping Policy: Debate
Thomas Abrahamsson has been the Chair of the EU Sectoral Social Dialogue Committee in Maritime Transport as from 1997 onwards (for the past 20 years). After his studies at the Lund and Gothenburg universities Thomas worked as a seafarer in the Ferry sector from 1974 until 1992. He became International Secretary of the Swedish Seafarers' Union in 1994 after being a Shop steward at Stena Line for two years. In 1996 he became President of the seafarers' branch of the Swedish Union for Service and Communications Employees (SEKO) and between 2002 and 2016 he was SEKO Vice President. Parallel to these functions he has been taking up additional responsibilities. Between 2012 and 2014 he was the acting ITF Maritime Coordinator, and from 2010 on he has been 1st vice chair of the ITF seafarers' Section, the Chair of the ETF MTS EU Committee and a Member of the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC).
Nik Delmeire, Belgian , obtained the degree of MBA at the University of Leuven in 1982. From 1983 till 2014 he had several management functions in Purchasing and Supply Chain in AGFA-GEVAERT, a Belgian multinational active in the world of Imaging.
Through his role in AGFA’s Supply Chain he got involved in the Belgian Shippers’ Organisation called OTM. An organization he chairs from 2009 till 2015. He was Vice Chairman of ESC from 2011 till October 2014. In October 2014 he joined ESC as Secretary General.
European Shippers’ Council exists since 1963 and represents the interests of the Shippers, the Cargo-owners . ESC’s objective is to improve the Supply Chain through working on the regulatory part and by promoting collaboration between the different partners in the Supply Chain. Apart from this, ESC is also involved in projects funded by the EU, the main one being CORE, and in Green Freight Europe, a program that aims at reducing the CO2 emissions.
Director for Waterborne Transport in Directorate-General for Mobility and Transport within the European Commission, since 16/10/2016. Her Directorate is responsible for the development and follow-up of the implementation of policies in support of logistics, maritime transport, ports, and inland navigation.
After joining the European Commission in 2006, to work in the Directorate-General for Internal Market and Services, she was appointed as the Head of Unit for Clean Transport, Urban Transport and Intelligent Transport Systems - between May 2009 and June 2011. In July 2011 she became Head of Unit dealing with Maritime Transport policy and Logistics, until taking up the post of Director for Sustainable and Innovative Mobility in DG MOVE on 1 May 2014.
Merja Kyllönen (born 1977) is a Finnish Member of the European Parliament in the GUE/NGL group. Ms. Kyllönen is an active member in the Committee on Transport and Tourism and a substitute in the Committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety.
She is a co-ordinator of transport issues in her political group.
Merja Kyllönen started her political career at 19, and has been serving as a councillor in her home town Suomussalmi since 2000. She is a former Minister for Transport in Finland (2011-2014) and a member of the Finnish parliament (2007-2014).
She commutes to Brussels from rural Northern Finland every week and is a heavy user of European transport system. Her ambition is to make transport in Europe smoother, safer and greener.
Ivan Sammut has 17 years’ experience in the international maritime industry and graduated with a Master of Science degree in International Maritime Studies from the University of Southampton, UK. He is the current Registrar General of Shipping and Seamen, responsible for the Merchant Shipping Directorate within Transport Malta – the Malta Ship and Yacht Register. He is Malta’s representative on the Administrative Board of the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) and the European Sustainable Shipping Forum (ESSF). Mr Samut is also Malta’s head of delegate at a number of meetings of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) and the International Labour Organisation (ILO). He is also a member of the Board of Directors of Yachting Malta and Malta Maritime Agency.
For the last seven years, Mr Sammut is entrusted to regulate, control and administer all matters related to ship and yacht registration under the Malta flag and their technical performance with regards to safety and pollution prevention and to promote Malta Maritime with the international shipping community. He is also entrusted with regulating the employment and certification of seafarers and to promote and advance the skills of seafarers and persons employed in the maritime industry, to foster Malta’s relations in international shipping fora and to administer the implementation of maritime and other related conventions and agreements.
Niels Smedegaard is President and CEO of the DFDS Group. He was previously President and CEO of the US-based e-gatematrix, a subsidiary of the Gate Gourmet Group.
Wim van der Camp is a Member of the European Parliament and European People’s Party (EPP) Co-ordinator on the Transport and Tourism Committee since 2014.
Violeta Bulc is the European Commissioner for Mobility and Transport. She was previously Deputy Prime Minister and the Minister responsible for Development, Strategic Projects and Cohesion and the Government of Slovenia.