Nor-Shipping believes that its 2017 outing marked a watershed moment for the leading global maritime event week, with strong visitor numbers, more international participants than ever before, and a speaker programme that will help set the industry agenda for years to come.

Nor-Shipping 2017, which took place across a series of venues in Oslo and Lillestrøm from 30 May to 2 June, held more events than ever (220), gathered a greater number of speakers than past programmes (150), and welcomed exhibitors from some 48 countries. Despite on-going tough market conditions, overall visitor numbers were maintained, with people from some 75 nations making the trip to Norway.

However, as Nor-Shipping Director Birgit Liodden explains, the figures only tell part of the story.

“It goes without saying that we’re happy to attract strong visitor, delegate and exhibitor numbers,” Liodden states, “but what we’re most proud of is the depth of content, insight and innovation on show throughout the week.

“From the revolutionary transport system of Hyperloop Transportation Technologies, to clean energy pioneers and planners, to major league shipowners, equipment and service suppliers, regulators, governments, cargo owners, and tech trailblazers, Nor-Shipping 2017 was the meeting place for the people that matter to maritime.

“Our conferences tackled the big industry issues – such as promoting diversity, sustainable shipping success, and the opportunities, and challenges, of increased digitization – while our podiums delivered unique insights on the key hotspots of Africa, Asia and Brazil. From the exhibition floors to the networking opportunities down by the water in Oslo, there really was something for everyone – and something of lasting value.”

Liodden sees many highlights from the week, with the decision to dedicate the whole of Hall A to the new industry concept of Disruptive Sustainability as a standout.

“The exhibition in Hall A, supported by a programme of Disruptive Talks, was like nothing else we’ve seen in this sector,” she comments. “By inviting innovative players from outside the industry – such as Siemens, HTT and Crowdstrike – to mix with shipping’s sharpest minds we saw a collision of ideas and potential that can help define our collective future.

“It demonstrated a new way of working together, pulling in inspiration and talent from wherever it resides and seeing how we can adopt and adapt it to benefit maritime. In a fast changing world, shipping needs to keep pace and this was our way of helping the industry accelerate.”

On that note, Liodden reveals that ‘accelerate’ is set to be the theme for Nor-Shipping 2019, taking place from 04-07 June 2019, following on from this year’s ‘catalyst for change’. It is, she notes, a natural focus for an industry looking to retain its position at the vanguard of world trade.

“We have the platform and position to build future success,” Liodden concludes, “and, as I saw over the course of the week, the industry is already changing fast. But we need to find the right partners to switch our development into overdrive – to finally rid ourselves of the historical, cyclical problems that plague us and access new potential. This isn’t just a pipedream; I believe we can really transform our prospects if we work together.

“Personally, I can’t wait to fast-forward to Nor-Shipping 2019 and see what the future holds.”

Nor-Shipping 2017 in numbers
Visitor entries at exhibition – 15,500
Delegate entries at exhibition, including visitors – 31,500
Approximate number of delegates who attended event week activities – 35,000
Number of exhibiting companies – 900
Number of national pavilions – 19
Exhibiting space m2 – 21,000
Opening Conference attendees – 750
Agenda Offshore attendees – 300
Waves of Change conference attendees – 270
Ocean Industry Podium – 700
Nor-Shipping BBQ guests – 2,500
Festival Street – 7,000