Home Ports & TerminalsCanals Markets et al; Panama Maritime Convention 2019 super day two…

Anny Zade and John Faraclas

Markets et al; Panama Maritime Convention 2019 super day two…

The BDI (Baltic Dry Index) lost another nine points yet again – same as yesterday and now reads 712… We are heading for lows once again, equally for geopolitics… Panama Maritime’s second day Conference and events more vibrant and ultra-informative. Women – WISTA’s make the day. Anny Zade and John Faraclas report:

The Capes continue to drop with the BCI now standing at 421 points – down 55 since yesterday!

The Panamaxes continue to clinch double digit points with the BPI standing at 92 – plus 17!

Minor gains but gains – every single gain counts for both the Supras and the Handies. The BSI clinched two points and the BHSI thee now standing at  789 and 443 points respectively…

Still a mixed picture and mode with the Wets; the last published BDTI (Dirties) and BCTI (Cleans) stood at 730 – minus five and  613 – plus seven respectively…
Feel we might see the Dirties dive dangerously…

The WTI was down a bit to US$ 58.91, twelve cents from yesterday’s US$ 59.03… C A U T I O N!

The Geopolitical situation remains enigmatically perplexed; too many issues and no solutions… Politicians “play” an amateurs game on purpose or they are jammed by the Business Hooligans… No respect to humans, no respect to citizens, subjects at all… The Drums of War are still one…

MIGRANTS, a bankrupt Planet Ocean with US$ 250 trillion, BREXIT, the faulty line from Gib to Afghanistan and from the caucuses to the Horn of Africa including the East Med/Mid East creates havoc… The powerful states must ensure that ISIS not only lost the occupied territory were they had aspiration of creating a caliphate but also its fighters must be arrested; end of the story. The EU cannot do what the USA did; flexing its muscles to the region as well as to the individual ISIS’ fighters men and women… We must saw as a humane society ZERO TOLERANCE as otherwise things might get sour all over!

China’s export saga, the USA’s sanctions there as well as for Iran, North Korea, Venezuela…

The entire African continent, to name but a few main global regions ,is on fire… Certainly all these issues affect shipping’s intermodalism and we repeat our warning that we have entered another recession!

Captain Orlando Allard opens the conference’s second day

The second day of the Panama Maritime XIV 2019 World Conference & Exhibition kick started on time with the most Power Breakfast one can imagine with WISTA’s Women calling the shots! 

For a start the event had to be transferred to the main hall as the designated one was too small to cope with this unbelievable turn out! Even women themselves have been puzzled! Unbelievable but true as WISTA Panama is one of the most dynamic and “vibrant” so to speak WISTA and with Panamanian women also participating as members in other WISTAs all over Planet Ocean! The only “absentee”  due to a sudden business pre-occupation was WISTA-Panama’s president Ms Veronica Valenzuela who was going to moderate the panel.  Gianela Rivas finally had the honour to run the panel.

Ingrid Vega

Just before the beginning of this long awaited Power Breakfast’s panel, we had the very eloquent Ms Ingrid Vega sharing with us the advantages of Panama and Panama Pacifico as a super logistics HUB with Agencia Panamá Pacífico.

In brief she said that Master Developer  is a partnership of two global entities: London & Regional Properties, which brings real estate savvy on a grand scale as developer, owner and manager of more than US$ 20 billion in international real estate in three continents and Southstone Investments adds Latin American experience and expertise!

Her slides presentation was unique  on property and investments. E X C E L L E N T on all counts with very good english and very convincing too !

These investments are of high international calibre and already results can be seen . She was warmly applauded!

The Key Note Speaker was WISTA’s International president and Tototheo CEO Despina Panayiotou-Theodosiou. Special Guest was Panama’s Ilya Marotta, the vice-president of Canal Transit Business and WISTA Panama member too. Quite an interesting presentation by Delia Garrido and excellent moderation by the very eloquent Gianela Rivas! (see above the live video)

Felipe Rodriguez at the podium delivering his speech and to his right the panel; Manuel Fernandez, Lyneth Stanziola, Francisco Serracin and Arlene Villalaz

Afterwards the first panel of the day on Agro Industries and Agro Logistics moderated by Lyneth Stanziola  – former minister of Agriculture – MIDA, took position on stage.

Felipe Rodriguez was the first to …occupy the podium with a very powerful speech supported by excellent slides. Very interesting slides with two well construed: The “Plan Maestro Para el Agro de la Region Occidental 2017 – 2024” and the “Vision Pais 2050” were very well presented and explained!

Then come Manuel Fernandez  from Mr. Agro  and lastly the very eloquent Arlene Villalaz with a good presentation being also a sentimental one; vigor for Panama’s agricultural capabilities was there at its best!

The panel

The next panel – an all men one, was well moderated by Francisco Linares and wasn’t just important given its issues, but also an academic one so to speak presentation.

“Legal Implications of Technological Disruptions in Shipping, Ports and Logistics & developments in Maritime Financing” come at no better time given what takes place these days with the ten year old shipping and financial crisis with lenders being squeezed as well as shipowners.

Dr. Stephen Girvin

Dr. Stephen Girvin, director at the Centre for Maritime Law at the National University of Singapore, was the first speaker with excellent slides too. The “Posidon (2017)” case and her sister-ship the “Pegasus” were thoroughly explained and once again we had an excellent case on priorities and bunkering issues coupled with banking and bunker supplier arguments. The bunker supplies argued that they had a priority ahead of the Bank because the Bank had authorised and approved the bunker purchases. Also ran an alternative argument that the Bank had, with knowledge of the shipowners’ insolvency, acquiesced in the procurement of bunkers knowing that it could benefit them. Also and very interestingly to see that the fact that the bunkers gave the vessels motive power so as to generate earnings benefited the owners, not the Bank. It was the borrowers, not the Bank, which had the use of the opening account in the relevant period. There was no evidence that the borrowers were insolvent prior to the Event of default and up to that date the Bank had no reason to believe that the borrowers were unable to pay their debts as they fell due. Finally another point was “not sufficient to say that, since all ships required bunker fuel to have motive power, the mortgagee must be taken to have knowledge of the fuel supplies having been procured”. Another case he mentioned was that of “The Ocean Wind 8 of Hartlepool (2018).” The ending slide was also worth to mention: “The Future?” Not the focus of any current Blockchain initiatives. Basic information may be recordable and whether financial institutions will want highly confidential client-specific mortgage information recorded using Blockchain technology remains to be seen. Excellent!

Dr. Victor Chacon

Thereafter Dr.Victor Chacon also from the National University of Singapore delivered an equally well prepared slides presentation on the concept of Due Diligence, technologies in Maritime Transport, making a special reference on the development of shipping technology after World War II ! Then on the 21st century development of shipping technology with mentioning and analysis on the more accurate routing systems; controlled atmosphere containers; drones, IoT (Internet of Things); Robots and Autonomous ships. Good points also on the evolving nature of seaworthiness condition with  reference  on the case of Tidmarsh v. Washington Fire & Marine Ins. Co., (1827) 4 Mason 439, 23 F. Cas. 1197 (C.C. of Mass.). Story C.J. |well explained was also on the issue of The Sea Carriers’ Liability for Technological Disruption the issue of “What if it is a sudden disruption?”.

Further mentioning of The Hague Rules At. IV. He concluded mentioning amongst others that “Technology makes the standard of seaworthiness to evolve” and “ that evolving conditions obliges that practicing due diligence supposes to take advantage of those technological developments  that improve safety and efficiency in the performance of the carriage of goods, as long as they fall within the four categories mentioned.”

Dr. Martin Davies

The very eloquent Dr. Martin Davies, director at the Maritime Law Centre in Tulane University also delivered a powerful speech as did Dr. Enrique De Alba, senior partner at Morgan & Morgan!

We then “entered” a double session panels on Artificial Intelligence  – the first panel being “orientated” on Liner companies with very interesting slides presentation under the title of “Impact of Artificial Intelligence in Maritime Transport”, the second one on the “Technological Challenges of Artificial Intelligence and its impact on logistics, pots and Shipping”.

Oscar Caballero from MIT moderated the first panel comprised by Miguel Rodrigues from ONE, Frida De Mitri from and Francesca Carrington from COSCO Shipping Lines. All speakers’ presentations were supported by excellent and self-explanatory slides!

Miguel Rodriguez from ONE

First to occupy the podium was Miguel Rodriguez from ONE; and what an excellent presentation that was:

“Artificial Intelligence as a tool to be used to comply with Shipping Industry Objectives”.

His slides were not just well construed but very well prepared and I guess the students present must have learned a lot. He was afterwards approached to reply to more questions given time constrains during his presentation.


Frida De Mitri

Frida De Mitri was the next speaker with an equally powerful and well prepared slides presentation – humorous too!

She spoke on Technological opportunities with very down to earth comparisons; where are as an Industry to the Maersk’s digitalisation journey in transforming. Maersk’s roadmap includes as all of us automating our roles and creating truly strategic function…

She “introduced” us with Holger! And the message: Automation is a key for us to deliver tomorrow! Holger, Maersk’s virtual colleague can manage 35 different processes. An “unbelievable” success and progress worth knowing!


She emphasised on a slide on the issue of “Purchase orders supported by Holger and analytics”. She also explained the RCM, the Remote Container Management which means that … “Our team’s mission is to build a product that reduces complexity for global trade” and “Our goal is to make the CM product look and feel like your favourite app on your phone”… She then … “introduced” us to Captain Peter for RCM who is the company’s Reefer Customers’ Virtual Assistant! Good to see and understand also the feedback from MAERSK customers! Well done!

Francesca Carrington

The finale of this panel was very powerful with the last speaker being also on a great day and kept us all eager for every new slide she produced on the screen, food for thought before lunch time. Congratulations to  Francesca Carrington of COSCO Shipping for her excellent slides presentation titled “Lead the Future with Smart Shipping and Intelligent Manufacturing”. The kick-start slide which attracting our interest said: ‘Focusing on four strategic dimensions, which are ‘scale growth, profitability, anti-cyclical capability and building a global company’, COSCO SHIPPING highlights the “6+1” industrial clusters layout”. “The 6 industrial clusters include Shipping. Logistics, Finance, Equipment manufacturing, Shipping services and Social Services” and “The ‘1’ means ‘Internet Plus’ based on business model innovation. This layout will help facilitate the integration of shipping factors and build a world-class logistics service and supply chain service provide”! Moreover she was also well prepared to back the above slide with another one on that Business Plus: “The ‘Internet  Plus’ business will serve new formats with high-quality Big Data, facilitate the Transformation and Upgrading of different business segments, and achieve the integrated application of Internet resources and shipping factors”.

Oscar Caballero who introduced and moderated  AI’s first panel

Well informed also on smart Shipping – offered by subsidiaries and in particular two very interesting mentioning: “The BMS of COSCO SHIPPING Bulk: It realizes a shift from ‘static management’ to ‘dynamic integration and intelligent analysis’, laying the ground for reasonable marketing decisions and quality services for customers” and an Overview of Intelligent Manufacturing referring to the intelligent shipbuilding workshop of NACKS (Nantong COSCO KHI Ship Engineering Co. Ltd), a production base of COSCO SHIPPING Heavy Industry affiliated to COSCO SHIPPING, was recognised by the  Ministry of Industry and Information Technology  (MIIT) as China’s only intelligent manufacturing pilot and demonstration project in the shipbuilding industry. In addition, several companies have successfully launched a number of intelligent and automatic production lines, including automatic steel section production line, bar stock robot production line, anticipatory sub assembly robot welding line and robot surfacing workstation. The major workshops have introduced automatic, intelligent and networked production, with multiple leading production indexes in China.” All in all the best presentation so far and pleased to hear issues on Cyber Attack and the Hacking being detected. She was warmly applauded by the 400 plus audience!

Another multi-Panamanian buffet lunch break at the Megapolis’ Convention Centre dinning area complimented also with excellent sweets and local fruits. A time to unwind but also to network in your table!

the panel with (l to r) Rear Admiral Carlos Fanta De La Vega, John Faraclas, Edgardo Lopez (moderator) and Dr. Ricaurte Arosemena

The second panel – in which we were also included,  was moderated by the towering Edgardo Lopez from Tideworks Technology; speakers included the very eloquent Dr. Andreas Chrisostomou from Marine Fields in Cyprus, Dr. Ricauerte Arosemena from USMA Panama, Rear Admiral Carlos Fanta De La Vega a Marine Mechanical Engineer and Maritime & Logistics Consultant from Chile and John Faraclas.

Andreas Chrisostomou delivering his speech

This panel obviously represented the independent shipowners in contrast with the previous one which was filled with Liner Companies speakers.

Dr. Andreas Chrisostomou’s slides were unique and the one on the “Yesterday’s Realities” as well as that on “Why?” exceptional – being very concrete and easy to understand.

An experienced speaker with great shipping knowledge on many shipping issues and a great career at the IMO heading the Cyprus delegation as well as, among other achievements he become chairman of IMO’s Marine Environment Protection Committee and was also nominated as a candidate by the Government of Cyprus to become the Secretary-General of IMO; also named “International Personality of the Year” in 2015 by Lloyd’s List Greek Shipping Awards,  Crisostomou correlated the Concern with the Need and the How; excellent! He was warmly applauded!

One of Dr. Arosemenas’ slides

Dr. Arosemena’s main issues focus on the Artificial Intelligence, the Big Data and Block Chain. Very explanatory.

Rear Admiral Carlos Fanta De La Vega’s speech was brief and to the point; he was warmly applauded.

Finally John Faraclas delivered an emotional  – due to his past visits in Panama and in particular his first one back in 1954, as well powerful speech “taking on” the previous panel which, according to his view must have included independent – tramp shipowners as he had to defend the 80 centum of shipowners.

His speech* is on a live video herebelow:

The last panel, a very important but also relaxing one, was on the “Nautical Tourism; The Yachts & Marinas Industry in Panama and the Amador Cruise Terminal”.

The panel was moderated by the very experienced on these issues Russ Gudgeons from Panama Maritime Chamber.

Sammy Eyeman

Speakers included Fernando Alonso from Colon 2000/  Homeport – what a great presentation he delivered; Franklin Samudio from Panama Canal Authority – exceptional delivery of a difficult presentation; Sanny Eyeman,  a very down to earth and very practical by heart delivery and John Faraclas.

Herebelow is John Faraclas’ second speech of the day on  “The importance of Nautical Tourism: Panama, the place for growth”.

From the LatAm drone presentation

The Conference’s  second day as well as the entire Panama Maritime XIV Conference ended with a Drone presentation  by LatAm drones.

Thereafter there was  a Raffle Draw which exceeded everybody’s agony of whom was to get the LatAm Underwater Drone home given that all seven first chosen winners were absent during the Ruffle process  as most of the delegates left to get ready for the evening reception gala at Miraflores Locks.

Finally there was a winner: Romano Feoli of Feoli & Co Attorneys at Law with number 23!! 

 The Raffle was based on the registration list; very fair and democratic too!  Well done from Brian Ottonlon and his colleagues.

Congrats to all who made the second day too a great conference day!

The night was still young as they say and we all left from our hotel, the famous and let me say: iconic Hard Rock Hotel to attend at Miraflores Docks the Gala Reception. what a night that was with the best possible prevailing weather conditions; one of the best ever witnessed in our lives. It remind me the numerous of times passing through the canal and watch up…

Tonight it was the other way round watching the ships passing through the Locks.  More than exceptional – a very rare experience, add the fantastic weather conditions prevailing and imagine…

Our host Jorge Quijano – 8th from the left with Captain Orlando Allard – 6th from the left and a group of women – mostly WISTA’s (speakers, delegates and organisers)

Our host and friend from past international events – LISW 2015 (London International Shipping Week) and Posidonia, Jorge Quijano and his colleagues did their best to entertain us in the unique Panamanian traditional style they know best!

The food was a wooooow and the drinks …shuttering! Above all a great get together and a more than cordial networking between the speakers, moderators and organisers. We all become a big business family; the Planet Ocean and its people in a unique way united!

And herebelow a glimpse of a vessel passing through the Miraflores Locks during the Gala reception (video by Anny Zade):

Wishing all a nice evening but also continue to remain on guard from actions emanating by Pirates, Terrorists, Criminals and Business Hooligans whatsoever wherever you are on Planet Ocean.


*Many thanks to James Brewer, Natasha Brown at the IMO, Dimitris N. Monioudis of R&K and president of the HESGB, Panos Zachariades of Atlantic Bulk Carriers for their support and info/views, Anny Zade for her patience – as usual AND filming, and finally my mother who keeps an amazing photographic data of our family and our journeys all over Planet Ocean to make this particular speech a reality!.

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