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Transport & Logistics

The final countdown to the IHMA Congress!

23 May 2016, by Informa Insights


Hero Image_ Port Metro VancouverThe final countdown has begun! This time next week we will have launched the 10th IHMA Congress in
Vancouver. Ahead of the Congress we are delighted to announce that we have finalised the event guide. The guide contains everything you need to know about the event including the agenda, social events and full exhibitor listings. You can view the guide here.

One of the speakers who will give a presentation on the first day of Congress is Captain Ben van Scherpenzeel, Project Officer for the IHMA. Captain van Scherpenzeel has been kind enough to give us some more insight into what his presentation will address and why this event is important for the industry. You can check it out below.

If you are interested in learning more about the event or viewing the full lineup of speakers you can do so here.

Ben van ScherpenzeelCaptain van Scherpenzeel, you will be highlighting the development of AVANTI at the 10th IHMA Congress in Vancouver next week. Tell us about the process of getting AVANTI ready for Port use.

Captain van Scherpenzeel: IHMA realised years ago the importance of quality nautical information for the port user. In general one expects the harbour master to be responsible for this information.

Setting the right priorities, the structure and definitions of this information, and having the right exchange format versus a word document takes a lot of hours to realize.

It has been a long journey: a lot of what we expect being already available in the marine industry, like definitions, appears not to be there in the end.

It’s up now to harbour masters to embrace the definitions.

Avanti is ready for all those ports that have already completed the Port Information Guide and a number of extra ports.

One of the points you will examine in your presentation is ‘The UKHO’s ‘Mariners Handbook’; how does this fit with Avanti?’ Can you give us a little more insight into this?

Captain van Scherpenzeel: The Mariners Handbook is an authorized publication and is sitting on the shelf of every Solas vessel.  In the glossary of the Mariners Handbook one can find the definitions of topics used in the marine industry. As quality of information comes first with data definitions, it’s important to have these published in this important publication.

In the edition of March 2015 one can find definitions re. depths. In the next edition, November 2016, one can find information re. port restrictions, an important part of the admission policy of the harbour master.

‘Port Expansion – The challenges’ is the central theme of the 2016 IHMA Congress. From your experience, how are ports changing and how are these changes redefining the role of harbour masters in the future?

Captain van Scherpenzeel: Every port is facing an increase of vessel sizes. These vessels need more exact nautical information re. depths and restrictions. Therefore the role of the harbour master as information provider will become more important.

Why is a Congress like this so important to the industry and what are you looking forward to about the 2016 IHMA Congress?

Captain van Scherpenzeel: Again quality information is about using the same standards and formats. Having all members of the IHMA agree on this is, is important to have it accepted worldwide and to propose them to standardization bodies such as the International Hydrographic Office.


We hope to see you in Vancouver next week!

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