Antwerp Port, Shanghai Maritime University Join forces
The port of Antwerp, the second-largest in Europe, is to collaborate with Shanghai Maritime University (SMU), a world-renowned centre of maritime know-how. As of next academic year four master’s students at SMU will receive a Port of Antwerp Maritime Award. With this collaboration Antwerp has opted resolutely in favour of supporting young talent. “Young potentials are the future: as a port we naturally invest in good commercial relations but we also consider supporting the future generations to be equally important,” declared Eddy Bruyninckx, CEO of Antwerp Port Authority, who signed the collaboration agreement in Shanghai.
Relations with China
Trade between Antwerp and China has developed over the centuries, so that Antwerp now has very close relations with various Chinese port cities. The 30th anniversary of twinning between Antwerp and Shanghai was celebrated extensively last year with among other things a trade mission to Shanghai led by the mayor of Antwerp, Bart De Wever.
During the visit the two port cities signed a Memorandum of Understanding in which they both undertook to provide training for maritime professionals, among other things. Shanghai may be the largest port in the world, but this maritime megacity nevertheless recognises the know-how and expertise that Antwerp has to offer in all sorts of areas such as port management, setting up links with the hinterland and developing logistical concepts.
APEC, the port of Antwerp training centre, has trained no fewer than 3800 Chinese port professionals in the past few years. As a result Antwerp’s maritime knowledge – and Chinese knowledge of Antwerp – is well represented in a large number of Chinese port cities. In this way Antwerp has built up considerable name recognition in China over the past decades. In the meantime Antwerp’s trade with the Far East and especially China is booming.
Port of Antwerp Maritime Award
In the course of the recent trade mission to China the Antwerp delegation visited a number of port cities with which it has close relations, and in Shanghai the collaboration agreement with SMU was signed. During each of the academic years 2015-2016 and 2016-2017 four master’s students will be presented with the Port of Antwerp Maritime Award.
In order to be eligible for the Award, which brings an amount of 500 euros, the students must write a thesis about a subject to do with port activities, ideally ones that relate to Antwerp. The four winning theses will be chosen by a jury made up of representatives of SMU and the port of Antwerp.
North China Roadshow
Before Shanghai the Antwerp delegation visited the port city of Dalian. Last year the port of Antwerp signed a collaboration agreement with Dalian Maritime University which similarly provides awards for a number of master’s students. The awards in Dalian were presented at a ceremony attended by Antwerp port alderman Marc Van Peel.
With the link below you can download pictures from the signing ceremony of today. On the left you see Huang Youfang, president of SMU, on the right you see Eddy Bruyninckx, CEO of the Antwerp Port Authority. Copyright Belga.