Beyond ports : IMO Secretary General Kitack Lim to address attendees of the IAPH 2020 World Ports Conference in Antwerp in March

IMO Secretary General Kitack Lim to address attendees of the IAPH 2020 World Ports Conference


Collaboration between ports and shipping to shape the main debates at #IAPH2020, with International Chamber of Shipping's Guy Platten and CLIA Europe's Tom Boardley to join Emanuele Grimaldi and CMB CEO Alexander Saverys to engage partnerships on energy transition, data collaboration, managing risk and embracing innovation.

IMO Secretary General Kitack Lim will attend as special guest speaker at the IAPH World Ports Conference 2020.

The 2020 World Maritime theme selected by the IMO is ‘Sustainable Shipping for a Sustainable Planet’, and Secretary General Lim has emphasised that 2020 will mark the “beginning of a decade of action and delivery” that will be decisive for both the shipping industry and for life on the planet. He identified challenges such as cutting greenhouse gas emissions, improving the efficiency of shipping through the electronic exchange of information, and creating a common path forward for the digitalization of shipping as key measures to transitioning to a sustainable future.

Patrick Verhoeven, Managing Director of the International Association of Ports & Harbors (IAPH) commented : “Secretary General Kitack Lim is a leading voice for collaboration between ports and shipping and we are delighted that he has confirmed his attendance. The themes of #IAPH2020 align with the IMO’s strategic goals for 2020 and beyond – in particular, the conference will explore the topics of energy transition and data collaboration, which are critical to ensuring that ports play a role in achieving a sustainable and profitable future for the global maritime industry.”

Beyond a conference : #IAPH2020 in Antwerp to coincide with Port Authorities Roundtable, APEC Executive UN SDGs Learning Program, PORTXL and the 2020 World Ports Sustainability Awards

A number of additional events will be taking place in Antwerp during the same week of the conference.

On Monday 16 March, APEC (Antwerp/Flanders Port Training Centre) will host an IAPH-supported one day executive masterclass Ports on the road to the achievement of SDGs.

The programme is offering executives, leaders and decision makers in the port community a practical approach on how to get started with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in a port environment, how to create focus on the different possibilities of the UN SDGs and how to integrate this into the port strategy in a hands-on manner.

On Tuesday 17 March, Antwerp will be host to the sixth annual Port Authorities Round Table at the Port of Antwerp's Havenhuis. Port Authorities Roundtable (PAR) is a by-invitation event for CEOs/Chairpersons/Presidents/DGs of the world's leading port authorities. PAR was initiated and inaugurated by Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore in 2015 with the aim to facilitate the exchange of ideas and learn best practices. It allows port authorities to engage in open sharing and discussion to address issues of common interests and seek mutually beneficial collaboration opportunities in today’s evolving maritime landscape.

The following day on Wednesday 18 March, these leading Port Authorities will join the inauguration of the IAPH 2020 World Ports Conference, which will be held at the Flanders Meeting and Convention Center Antwerp. The Center is home to the spectacular Queen Elisabeth Hall and Atrium which is the city's principal classical concert venue. The adjoining Carnot Wing will host face-to-face meetings between ports and start-ups of the PORTXL program to kick-start sustainability innovation projects and will also demonstrate an innovative SDG training game under development by the IAPH World Ports Sustainability Program.

That same evening, the fully-renovated historic Antwerp Bourse will host the second edition of the IAPH World Ports Sustainability Awards at the Conference gala dinner. With a long list of forty new port sustainability projects covering the globe registered on the World Ports Sustainability Program (WPSP) and implemented by IAPH members in the previous year, the finalists will be pre-selected by an expert jury and winners selected by them and the public via an online voting system a month before the event in March.

WPSP Technical Director Antonis Michail commented : "the quality and diversity of the projects submitted in the last year have demonstrated to us again the value we can generate by sharing the experiences gained with the global port community who can apply similar initiatives to their ports. We fully intend to highlight these examples of applying the UN Sustainable Development Goals in practice at the Conference with the publishing of the first annual World Ports Sustainability Report."

About IAPH (

Founded in 1955, the International Association of Ports and Harbors (IAPH) is a non-profit-making global alliance of 170 ports and 140 port-related organisations covering 90 countries. Its member ports handle more than 60 percent of global maritime trade and around 80 percent of world container traffic. IAPH has consultative NGO status with several United Nations agencies. In 2018, IAPH established the World Ports Sustainability Program (WPSP). Guided by the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals, it aims to unite sustainability efforts of ports worldwide, encouraging international cooperation between all partners involved in the maritime supply chain. WPSP ( covers five main areas of collaboration: energy transition, resilient infrastructure, safety and security, community outreach and governance.