Delving into deep discussions on marine trade can spark many thoughts and ideas on how to make ports more efficient and thus more competitive. During Halifax Port Days, expert panel discussions have become a highly anticipated part of the event’s agenda with participation not only from highly respected panelists but often from conference delegates who push panelists with insightful questions. This year’s topic promises to be as interesting as those of the past as panelists discuss, “What parts of the supply chain need innovating, including trade-enabling investment, to elevate Canada’s ability to compete globally?”

Panel moderator will be Peter Hurme, Programming Coordinator, Cargo Logistics Canada and Correspondent for Lloyd’s List. Expert panelists include Jean-Jacques Ruest, Executive Vice-President and Chief Marketing Officer, CN; Wolfgang Schoch, Managing Director, Hapag-Lloyd (Canada) Inc. and Madeleine Paquin, President and CEO, Logistec Corporation. Ms. Paquin and Mr. Ruest were both inducted into the International Maritime Hall of Fame earlier this year.

Madeleine Paquin, President and CEO of Logistec, provider of marine and environmental services, offered some thoughts on what delegates may hear during the panel discussion. “Potential discussion could evolve around how we create a solid and sound investment framework to ensure we are investing in key strategic hubs and supply chains in Canada,” she said in an email. “This theme could include how we create the necessary collaboration between government, industry and research/academia to arrive at the best investment decisions.”

Logistec Stevedoring Inc., a subsidiary of Logistec Corp., plays an important role in the supply chain providing specialized cargo handling and port logistics services to marine and industrial customers. It has a network of some 30 ports and 40 terminals across eastern North America.

The Port Days’ agenda, which include a trade show component with over 20 booths, will kick-off with the highly popular annual golf tournament and barbeque on Sept. 13, at Chester Golf Club. It will be followed in the evening by an opening reception at the Cunard Centre. In 2016, Halifax Port Days had over 500 delegates and this year record numbers are registered for both the business session and Chairman’s breakfast. The breakfast will highlighted by remarks from Halifax Mayor Mike Savage and Treasury Board President Scott Brison.

This year’s luncheon will be held at the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21 beginning at noon. The keynote speaker will be Jeff MacLean, President, Michelin North America (Canada).

During the luncheon, Halifax Port Authority will honour a long-time client, Hapag-Lloyd, with an award commemorating the shipping line’s 125 years of doing business in Canada. Hapag-Lloyd, which has been calling Halifax since 1972, began its original service between Europe to Canada (Montreal) with the steamship Cremon. The carrier offers 14 liner services from Canadian ports, five of which are through Halifax.

“Halifax Port Authority is proud to congratulate Hapag-Lloyd on 125 years of liner service to Canada,” said President and CEO Karen Oldfield. “This is a remarkable milestone and significant achievement. The industry has seen significant evolution since the Hapag steamer Cremon first sailed into Montreal in 1892. We are grateful the Port of Halifax was later added to Hapag-Lloyd’s regular rotation and we value the strong relationship our organizations share.”

This year also marks milestones for two other of Halifax’s major port clients, Atlantic Container Line (ACL) and ZIM Integrated Shipping Services.

“2017 marks ACL’s 50th year of continuous operation and, most importantly, saw the last of our new G-4 builds, Atlantic Sun, delivered in early July,” said Fritz King, ACL’s Managing Director. “Having these significant company milestones to celebrate during Halifax Port Days provides us with a special bonus. Over our long history, Halifax Port Authority and the port have been key components in our success. We are pleased to participate in showcasing the unique advantages of the port to our many visiting clients and to the marine community in general,” he said.

ZIM started calling Halifax as Zim Container Service (ZCS) in 1972. It was a pendulum service that came from the Mediterranean to Halifax, down the US East Coast, through the Panama Canal and then to the Far East, and then returned.

The Port Authority recognizes ZIM’s contribution, significance and strength the company brings to Halifax. “ZIM is a longstanding ocean carrier calling on the port of Halifax and was the first carrier to bring ultra-class vessels over 10,000 TEU to the port,” said HPA’s Lane Farguson. “ZIM continues to play an important role in cargo growth and development, as do all of the carriers calling on the Port of Halifax,” he added.