MoU with chemical industry association signed during state visit
ANTWERP/MUMBAI: The Port of Antwerp is to collaborate more closely with India, its seventh-largest trading partner. During the state visit to India by H.M. King Philippe of Belgium, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed in the presence of His Majesty by Jacques Vandermeiren, CEO of Antwerp Port Authority, and Mr. Ravi Kapoor, Chairman of the Indian Chemical Council which represents the chemical industry in India. The Antwerp Port area is home to the largest petrochemical cluster in Europe, and so collaboration in this field is a natural choice for both partners. In addition to joint promotion, the parties have agreed in the MoU to exchange relevant information and to organise an annual commercial event, either in India or in Antwerp.
Presence in India
Over the past years the Port of Antwerp has constantly invested in closer collaboration with the Indian business world and local authorities. Annual visits, a permanent, full-time representative in the port city of Mumbai, these are just some of the means employed to raise the profile of the
Port of Antwerp in India. In 2015, Antwerp's expertise in training maritime professionals gained a permanent presence in India with the setting up of the JNPT APEC Port Training Centre in Mumbai. Maritime professionals from all over India are trained here every year, drawing upon Antwerp's expertise and know-how.
The efforts are paying off, as the volume of trade between India and Antwerp has grown over the past few years to more than 6 million tonnes of freight in 2016. This year the figures are even better: 10% more freight has already been handled in the first three quarters than in the same period last year. Containers and steel in particular are performing well, while chemicals make up a significant part of the annual volume.
Indian Chemical Council
The Indian Chemical Council (ICC), founded in 1938 with headquarters in Mumbai, is the national body that represents all sectors of the chemical industry in India. From its headquarters and six regional offices, seminars and events are organised to help spread information about the chemical industry in India. Thanks to the collaboration with Antwerp the ICC hopes to gather more knowledge concerning the sector, while Antwerp sees the collaboration as among other things an opportunity to further promote the Port in India.