Nor-Shipping 2017 has confirmed that Rear Admiral Paul Thomas of the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) is the latest high profile speaker to be signed for the leading maritime event week. The move comes at a time when USCG is making waves throughout shipping, after agreeing the biggest ever newbuild order in its history.
Nor-Shipping, taking place across a series of venues in Oslo and Lillestrøm from 30 May to 2 June 2017, has already gathered a diverse range of contributors from both within the industry and without. Names include Thomas Wilhelmsen, CEO Wilh. Wilhelmsen, global strategist and intellectual Parag Khanna, KONGSBERG CEO Geir Håøy, DNV GL CEO Remi Eriksen, and Peggy Liu, the Chairperson of Joint US-CHINA Collaboration on Clean Energy.
According to Nor-Shipping Director Birgit Liodden, Thomas, USCG Assistant Commandant for Prevention Policy, will add yet another perspective to a line-up that aims to deliver valuable insights right across the shipping board.
She notes: “Rear Admiral Paul Thomas oversees three directorates - Inspections and Compliance, Marine Transportation Systems, and Commercial Regulations and Standards – that are key to the efficient, compliant and safe functioning of the waters belonging to the world’s number one economy.
“He has a unique position, with unique insight into both the changing face of the maritime industry and the challenges facing his organization in keeping pace with emerging technologies and wider societal concerns. His experience is second to none, and we believe his contribution will reflect this. The fact that it comes at such a pivotal time for the Coast Guard makes it all the more noteworthy.”
USCG recently agreed to build nine Vard Marine designed Offshore Patrol Cutters (OPCs) at Eastern shipbuilding in Panama City Florida. This ‘Phase II’ fleet renewal could have a potential value of USD 2.38bn, if all options are exercised, with the USCG eventually targeting a fleet of 25 OPCs. The first vessel is scheduled for delivery in 2021.
“The main theme of Nor-Shipping 2017 is ‘Catalyst for Change’ and it’s clearly a transformational time for USCG,” Liodden adds. “Rear Admiral Paul Thomas will, together with our other carefully selected contributors, reveal how his organization is adapting to a world where the pace of change is accelerating and highlight how they, and the industry as a whole, can best position themselves for the challenges and opportunities of the future.
“Such a diverse line-up of high caliber contributors has yet to be experienced in a maritime event context. We are convinced all our delegates will benefit from some unique takeaways at Nor-Shipping 2017.”
The event week is expected to attract around 35,000 visitors, with almost 1,000 of the world’s leading maritime companies showcasing products and services to the industry, future talent and shipping value chain stakeholders. Further names will be added to the Nor-Shipping speaker program in the coming weeks.
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