#IrishMaritimeForum - The Irish Maritime Forum held last Friday was the place to be as more than 150 attendees where at the annual event at the National Maritime College of Ireland (NMCI) in Ringaskiddy.
The forum which was both hosted and organised by the NMCI looked at “Success through Synergy – an innovative and dynamic approach to the future”. The event had welcomed both organisations and maritime professionals operating in the broad Maritime Industry in Ireland.
The event was officially opened by John Mullins (Chairman, Port of Cork) before Simon Coveney, Minister of State for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, and Defence took to the stage to discuss the importance of the Maritime Industry to Ireland’s economic recovery and how "solutions to a number of the World's great challenges will come from the sea".
Having recently attended the Ploughing the Minister mentioned “how SeaFest (Maritime Festival) will become to maritime what the Ploughing Championships are to agriculture".
Setting the scene for the speakers Fergal O’Brien (IBEC) spoke about the Irish Economy and how we have gone from boom, to bust to recovery.
Liam Lacey, Director of the IMDO, took to the stage to discuss Ireland’s maritime potential, trends in the international shipping industry, and the Irish Tonnage tax system.
Jonathan Healy, MC for the event, then interviewed five key industry leaders in a Maritime Skills Panel Discussion; Rory McGuire (Flagship Management), Conor Mowlds (Head of College), Kevin Richardson (President of the International Harbour Masters Association), Captain Dave Elliott (Arklow Shipping) and Cormac Gebreurs (Head of Halpin Centre for Research & innovation).
The Maritime Skills panel discussed the shortage of skilled personnel in the industry, what issues face the industry in terms of finding the right personnel, and how new legislation is affecting the industry in terms of recruitment.
Dave Ward, Commercial Service Manager with Commissioner of Irish Lights, who spoke about the Great Lighthouses of Ireland.
Dave spoke about the role CIL are taking in the development of all island Lighthouse Tourism Project which looks at Securing and Protecting Lighthouse Heritage while stimulating local economic development and employment in coastal communities.