By Mersey Maritime
By Mersey Maritime
With less than three weeks to go until polling day in the General Election 2019, the manifestoes have been launched and live ballot papers are now beginning to land on doormats. Voters around the country are making their choice in what may well turn out to be one of the historic electoral contests of our generation. With all the rhetoric and the heat of debate in the campaign, it is easy for key messages and themes to be missed with the focus inevitably being on the seminal subjects of the NHS, education and, of course, Brexit, arguably the very reason this election is taking place at all.
Mersey Maritime members know only too well how much our sector really matters and deserves to have the spotlight of debate cast upon it too. Nationally it is worth more to the economy than air and rail combined, representing £46.1 billion and 1.1 million jobs. Closer to home, the key statistics are striking too.
Over the summer, in collaboration with Maritime UK, we commissioned a major study into the economic impact of the sector in the Liverpool City Region and the results were significant. When the discussions at a national level talk in abstract terms about the ‘economy’, ‘growth’, ‘productivity’ and ‘jobs’, this is what that actually means.
Maritime in our region:
My message is simple and clear: with maritime being so important to all levels of the economy, this general election is an essential opportunity to focus on the priorities our industry has already been setting out in this campaign through the Maritime UK manifesto. Building on Maritime 2050, the first long-term strategy that is already driving the sector forward since its launch earlier this year, the themes are well known and familiar. But people, innovation, the environment, competitiveness and regional growth aren’t just words. They represent clear priorities and policy areas that, acted upon properly, have the potential to have a transformative effect. Like investing in people to equip them with the skills they need for an exciting career in maritime – from ports to shipping or businesses services. Or harnessing new technology and innovation as a response to the pressing need to tackle the climate change agenda that underpins our own collaboration recently with businesses in the offshore energy sector. There’s massive potential out there across so many areas!
It really is vital that candidates from all parties, particularly those who have the opportunity to represent our coastal communities, respond to the overall vision the industry is setting out as we seize the opportunities that an election campaign always presents. The driving ambition to create a stronger, greener, outward looking and global UK maritime sector to build prosperity and jobs is there amongst our businesses and partners. The challenge now is for our aspirant politicians to step up to the mark and make it a reality!
Read the Maritime UK manifesto here: https://www.maritimeuk.org/media-centre/news/maritime-uk-launches-general-election-manifesto/
By Mersey Maritime
Recognised as the United Kingdom’s leading maritime cluster organisation at the recent Maritime UK National Awards in Southampton, Mersey Maritime is pleased to announce the launch of its own sixth annual Mersey Maritime Industry Awards, 2020.
A firm fixture in the calendar of the maritime community across the North West, Mersey Maritime will once provide the industry across the North of England the opportunity to showcase their work at this special and high profile event taking place on Friday 6th March 2020 at the iconic St Georges Hall in Liverpool.
Commenting, Chief Executive, Chris Shirling-Rooke said:
“As an organisation we were delighted to be recognised at a national level by Maritime UK in their awards in September, although we are rather used to handing the awards out ourselves rather than receiving acclamation in this way! But it has given us a taste of what it feels like to have the work and activity we engage in on a day to day basis applauded and accredited externally. Here in the North West, I’ve always felt that we are in a unique position. Businesses collaborate with each other, offer support and celebrate achievements together. Mersey Maritime is driven by our motto that we are, ‘Stronger Together’, which has been a key factor in the Liverpool City Region’s recognition as a centre of maritime excellence. These annual awards always seek to showcase this fact.
“This year our theme is ‘Navigating New Horizons.’ With the UK’s likely withdrawal from the European Union firmly in sight, it is more important than ever that we look to the opportunities that a renewed focus on global and international trade represents for our region. As the country’s major west-facing port city, the wider Liverpool City Region is well placed to seize the opportunities presented as we reach out as far as possible across the world to bring trade, investment and growth to our area. Now is the time to be excited and optimistic about the future. These awards will definitely celebrate and champion the enthusiasm I know matters so much to our members.
“We are delighted to also announce the generous support of a number of our long term strategic partners in sponsorship for the event. ‘Diamond Sponsorship’ has been secured from Peel Ports Group, Kays Medical, Western Union Business Solutions and Royal HaskoningDHV for MMIA20. Each of these businesses recognises the valuable role Mersey Maritime plays in being the ‘voice for the maritime sector’ in the Liverpool City Region and are committed to seeing our £4.2 billion sector continue to thrive.”
“Our sixth annual awards event looks set to be the biggest and best yet. Our planning is now well advanced, and the application process is live online. For some time, we’ve wanted to take these important regional awards to the next level and we are confident our plans for the event in 2020 won’t disappoint. Find out more here: https://merseymaritime.co.uk/mm-events/mmia20/
Award application details:
The application process for the awards opens on Monday 25th November 2019 and will close on Tuesday 7th January 2020. The award categories are as follows:
For further information please visit https://merseymaritime.co.uk/mm-events/mmia20/
By Mersey Maritime
A high-level UK delegation to the US which included the chief executive of Mersey Maritime has urged both countries to strike a post-Brexit Free Trade Agreement that will significantly increase transatlantic trade.
Representing Liverpool city region’s £4bn powerhouse maritime sector Chris Shirling-Rooke joined delegates from the UK Government and Maritime UK on board HMS Queen Elizabeth, Britain’s flagship aircraft carrier, for the second UK-USA Maritime Nations Forum in Maryland.
Top of the agenda was the push for the UK and US to sign a UK-US Free Trade Agreement if, as expected, the UK leaves the EU Customs Union. The decarbonisation of the global maritime sector was also one of the top priorities.
Mr Shirling-Rooke told both the UK and US representatives that Liverpool had made huge investments into its port and logistics infrastructure and was geared up to be Britain’s main gateway for trade with North America.
“With Liverpool being the UK’s major west-facing port, as chief executive of Mersey Maritime, I felt it essential for the Liverpool City Region to be represented on this major Maritime UK and HM Government trade mission to Washington. The potential for global trade and foreign direct investment between the UK and US is immense in the years ahead and our dynamic maritime sector here in the city region stands ready to capitalise on the opportunities presented” said Mr Shirling-Rooke.
The forum brought together CEOs from across the maritime sector in both countries to focus on two key issues. The first, to identify barriers to increasing trade between the UK and US and the second to seek an agreement on how to respond to the challenge of decarbonisation in the sector.
The UK delegation will be learning from the US experience of free ports, following the British government’s announcement that it will work with industry to create 10 free ports in the UK.
Mr Shirling-Rooke added: “I was particularly delighted that our key strategic partners, Western Union Business Solutions, were able to host a ‘Transatlantic Reception’ on the opening evening. At that event we heard just how significant the business opportunity is for our industry.
“A recent survey showed the UK was the third-highest ranked foreign market in terms of predicted future trade, behind China and Canada. Mersey Maritime, and the centuries of global trading experience it represents, will do all it can to ensure this once in a generation opportunity to maximise global trade between our region and the US isn’t missed.”
Harry Theochari, chair of Maritime UK and head of global transport at Norton Rose Fulbright, added: “The UK and US are natural global partners, and no sector is more global or critical to trade than maritime. Preparing to leave the EU has asked new questions of our businesses – and necessitated a different way of thinking about trade and growth markets. Regardless of what happens with Brexit, that fresh thinking can only be a good thing.”
By Mersey Maritime
Tony McDonough writes:
A new era of investment into the offshore wind sector offers huge opportunities for Liverpool city region maritime businesses.
That was the message delivered to business owners, executives and professionals at special event hosted by Mersey Maritime, addressed by experts in the UK’s booming clean energy sector.
Earlier this year, the Government unveiled a £40bn plan to ensure a third of electricity in Britain would be provided by offshore wind by 2030. The new Offshore Wind Growth Partnership would boost the UK supply chain with global exports set to increase fivefold to £2.6bn by 2030.
This sector deal will mean for the first time in UK history there will be more electricity from renewables than fossil fuels, with 70% of British electricity predicted to be from low carbon sources by 2030 and more than £40bn of infrastructure investment in the UK.
The deal has inspired a major cross-sector, cross-regional collaborative effort with Mersey Maritime and innogy Renewables UK joining forces to promote the Offshore Energy Alliance (OEA), the North West and North Wales newly-created supply chain cluster. It will provide support for offshore and energy related businesses and activities.
The UK’s current offshore generating capacity is around 8.5GW, with more than 3GW currency under construction. The Government’s target of 30GW by 2030 could be upped to 40GW if the Conservatives win the General Election, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said. With the cost of wind power falling rapidly, the opportunities are substantial.
Helen Thomas from innogy told those attending Mersey Maritime’s Offshore & Energy Forum, that the offshore cluster, comprising wind farms off the coast of Merseyside, North Wales and Cumbria, currently supplied a third of the UK’s generating capacity.
She explained how the partnership with Mersey Maritime had the potential to be a powerful driving force. She said: “When we came across Mersey Maritime we saw how great the synergies were.
“Our cluster comprises 12 offshore wind farms, providing one-third of the UK’s capacity. There are big opportunities on extensions for existing wind farms and on new wind farms under the UK’s Round Four. It is also about linking up with other clusters. Productivity, knowledge and innovation are all being driven by clusters.”
Helen also emphasised that the opportunities for North West and North Wales suppliers weren’t limited to UK offshore wind expansion. With offshore wind growing rapidly across the world, she said, there were opportunities for businesses to export their expertise and knowledge overseas.
Ruth Wood, head of commercial at Mersey Maritime, told those assembled that this event, held at the beginning of Offshore Wind Week, was just the first in a series of events that the organisation planned to hold quarterly.
She spoke about how the Liverpool city region maritime sector was a dynamic powerhouse, generating £4.2bn a year and employing 52,000 people, and was ready and willing to take full advantage of the next phase of growth in offshore wind.
“Maritime is a growing, thriving industry,” she said. “The Offshore Energy Forum is something we have wanted to launch and we started to have conversations with innogy. For us, it made perfect sense to be part of the Offshore Energy Alliance.”
Other speakers to address the forum included Cheryl Whitaker, a business development manager at the Welsh Government, who spoke about the planned extension to the current Gwynt-y-Môr wind farm off the coast of North Wales.
And Stuart Barnes from the Offshore Renewable Energy (ORE) Catapult, which helps businesses to commercialise their offshore energy innovations, said: “We are here as a resource to support UK plc. Britain has a great reputation for innovation but faces more of a challenge when it comes to commercialising and scaling that innovation.”
Look out on the Mersey Maritime events page for forthcoming Offshore Energy Forums.
By Mersey Maritime
For the second year running, Mersey Maritime will join a major maritime trade mission to the United States of America between 19 and 21 November 2019. Organised by Maritime UK and HM Government, the mission will focus on the UK-USA Maritime Nations Forum, which was first held in New York last year aboard HMS Queen Elizabeth and will this year take place in Washington DC. The Forum will celebrate the strength of UK-US relations and explore further areas for collaboration, specifically covering developments in each respective national maritime sector, discussion around key areas for negotiation in a future UK-US Free Trade Agreement and what opportunities exist for enhanced collaboration and best practice sharing.
Ahead of the mission, Chris Shirling-Rooke, Chief Executive of Mersey Maritime, writes:
“The United Kingdom has always been an outward looking, forward thinking, global trading nation, not least because our status as an island makes this such a necessity for our economy and has been our driving mission for many centuries. As we look to the future of all our trade relationships across the globe, with our departure from the European Union on the horizon, maximising the opportunity of the special relationship between the UK and the US is one not to be missed. The strength of that relationship is like few others, being already based on a strong commitment to freedom, trade and prosperity.
“The Liverpool City Region, with our long and deep maritime history as an entry point for trade and commerce into the country, has meant our area is a natural focus for global trade. Well established trade relationships between Liverpool and the United States already exist and this trade mission symbolises the unique opportunity presented to further expand our transatlantic partnerships. Liverpool, as both a major port city and one of the great powerhouses of the United Kingdom, is well placed to be a leading partner and gateway to both facilitate and drive growth. I know from speaking with our members that they are in no doubt about the commitment of our country to build collaborative industrial partnerships with our great American friends and want to play their part in this. The presence of Mersey Maritime and our partners on this trade mission will help develop the strengths we have on both sides of the Atlantic and cements our reputation as a facilitator of successful relationships wherever the opportunity exists.
“We know it really matters when you take a moment to consider the scale of the opportunity. With over $1 trillion worth of trade between our two countries already, and almost 40% of all containerised goods by volume from North America passing through Liverpool, the scope is there for even more investment and growth as a result of building on the already flourishing relationship. Liverpool is the major west-facing port in the country so its no surprise that we’ve seen massive investment in local infrastructure which helps us gear up to maximise and take full advantage of increased transatlantic trade. Like the Peel Ports investment of £1 billion into Liverpool2 and the significant infrastructure along the corridor between here and Manchester via the Ship Canal. We are well placed to become the go-to region for American investment.
“Whilst the focus of Mersey Maritime is primarily on the needs of our member businesses in the local context, we recognise and value the importance of maximising and utilising international opportunities too. Our overall aim as an organisation is to help businesses succeed and to ensure their ambitions are realised as effectively as possible. This trade mission provides a valuable opportunity to promote the UK offer to as broad an audience as possible, and further showcase what the Liverpool City Region has to offer. Breaking down barriers to trade and investment and engaging in conversations to facilitate collaboration are the principles that underpin our day to day to work, such as through our International Trade Forum and the conferences we organise to promote trade and export as key opportunities for our sector businesses. That’s why we are in Washington and we look forward to a really successful and productive visit.”
By Mersey Maritime
In a major cross-sector, cross-regional collaborative effort, Mersey Maritime and innogy Renewables UK are pleased to announce their partnership to promote the ‘Offshore Energy Alliance’ (OEA). The OEA is the North West and North Wales (NWNW) region’s newly created supply chain cluster, that will provide support for offshore and energy related businesses and activities.
The cluster’s delivery is linked directly to commitments set out in the ’Offshore Wind Sector Deal’ and ‘Maritime 2050: Navigating the Future’ strategies, both of which were launched earlier this year. The cluster and its planned activities aim to further increase benefits to coastal communities by providing support for local businesses, raising awareness of upcoming opportunities in the sector, facilitating forums and networking events in offshore, low carbon and energy-related matters and helping to further innovation, skills and diversity efforts amongst the industries.
During national ‘Offshore Wind Week’, a local launch event for the Offshore Energy Alliance will take place on Monday 18 November at the Birkenhead base of Mersey Maritime, click here to register to attend
Commenting, Chief Executive of Mersey Chris Shirling-Rooke said:
“Mersey Maritime is the award winning regional cluster organisation for the maritime sector in the Liverpool City Region, with seventeen years of experience in building collaboration between key partners and seizing opportunities to drive forward innovative projects. The need for transformative environmental initiatives is essential as we rise to the challenge of a low-carbon, low-cost energy sector which our members tell us is a key priority for them. Representing the whole maritime sector in the region, of which offshore is a key sub-sector, we are well placed to offer support to this new cluster.“
“We are delighted to partner with innogy on this exciting venture where we will bring our experience to bear in cluster working to champion the offshore energy industry as the UK maximises the opportunity of a global shift to clean growth. Powering up our Coastal Powerhouse communities is all about taking advantage of opportunities for growth that are right on our doorstep which this opportunity certainly is!”
Richard Sandford, Director of Offshore Investment & Asset Management at Innogy, said:
“This cross-sectoral, cross-regional effort to bring the local supply chain together across the North West and North Wales (NWNW) region directly showcases the offshore wind industry’s efforts to deliver on the Sector Deal commitments. We are delighted to be joining forces with Mersey Maritime as an existing lead cluster organisation and to be working with other key organisations across the region to help deliver increased benefits to coastal communities .”
“The NWNW region hosts around one third of the UK’s Offshore Wind capacity from North Wales to Cumbria, which includes innogy’s Gwynt y Môr Offshore Wind Farm. This means it already has much to offer for the future of offshore wind and the broader offshore sector, which we know is only set to grow. The establishment of the OEA will help capture the existing and upcoming benefits from a range of offshore activities across the regions involved in a collaborative way.”
By Mersey Maritime
Chief Executive of Mersey Maritime, Chris Shirling-Rooke, writes:
At London International Shipping week in September, Maritime UK – the national body which brings together the UK’s shipping, ports, services, engineering and leisure marine industries – launched its ‘State of the Maritime Nation 2019’ report. This analysis highlighted the vital role the sector plays in the British economy with 95% of all trade facilitated by UK maritime; larger than both the automotive and aerospace transport industries. The sector also boasts high productivity and is a major contributor to the UK Exchequer. That’s the national picture but what about here in the Liverpool City Region (LCR)? For centuries maritime has been a major employer, with hundreds of maritime related businesses operating locally ranging from major corporations right through to small and medium sized enterprises. It stands to reason that this national context is replicated in our regional economy too?
Over the summer, Mersey Maritime, working with Maritime UK, commissioned a special report in partnership with the Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr) to ‘deep-dive’ into how the national impact is reflected at a regional level. Working closely with a range of businesses across the sector in our role as a regional cluster organisation, we already had a strong sense of the dynamism and vitality of the maritime offer here in the LCR but we were keen to know in more detail the actual figures that underpin this.
The findings have confirmed for us just how critical the sector is to the regional and national economy. The numbers are big, with:
But the good news doesn’t stop there. The forecast for growth is 16% cumulative between 2019 and 2023 – a real vote of confidence in the region and the commitment of the people Mersey Maritime deal with on a day to day basis, our members.
Whilst the national picture might be uncertain at a political level with all the noise around Brexit, it is clear that maritime businesses here in the Liverpool City Region are getting on with what they do best: investing to bring the stability that comes from jobs and business growth locally. Mersey Maritime will continue to champion our sector and support all those who are making this success story happen.
Cebr report highlights – overall analysis covers the period 2010 to 2017:
By Mersey Maritime
Chief Executive of Mersey Maritime, Chris Shirling-Rooke writes:
Last week saw a big staging post in the evolution and journey of Mersey Maritime. Winning the ‘Coastal Powerhouse’ category in the inaugural Maritime UK National Awards cemented our reputation, built up over the last seventeen years, as one of the leading players in the country’s maritime industry. The category was open to a business, charity, organisation or cohort of any size, who have proven themselves as a driver or catalyst for growth within a coastal community. We believe our values, passion and vision as an organisation and the results we have demonstrated for nearly twenty years, put us at the heart of the principles underpinning the award.
Winning the award was an incredible privilege but it was about more than just that achievement. It also cast a strong light on how important the maritime sector continues to be in the Liverpool City Region, which anyone who lives and does business here knows has been such a significant industry in our area for centuries.
It is perhaps a little known fact that 95% of UK trade is handled by the maritime sector and we are larger than both the automotive and aerospace transport industries. This underlines how important maritime is to the country but, our own regional figures also show, Merseyside is a significant part of this overall picture. We know that the sector:
This represents a major contribution to the regional and national economy and demonstrates why the work of Mersey Maritime is so important. And it builds on the recognition we received from Government in the Maritime 2050 strategic document which was launched in early 2019 and commented:
“One of the most established and successful clusters is in Liverpool centred on the creation of Mersey Maritime in 2003. Mersey Maritime is the representative body for the marine and maritime sector in the Liverpool City Region, working with large and small businesses across 33 different sub-sectors of activity to create conditions that will allow business to flourish.”
In a nutshell, that’s what we are all about. We are standing full square behind this overall strategic document to propel forward the maritime sector in the years ahead. Locally this means our over-riding objective will be to continue creating an attractive business environment whilst also fostering innovation and growth. With around 200 members of our cluster, we are well placed to achieve this aim but we can and should aim higher so that’s why I’m asking today:
Is it time for you to be part of this journey?
Here are just some of the key reasons why we would be delighted to see you become part of Mersey Maritime and join what is now officially the UK’s leading ‘Coastal Powerhouse’ maritime cluster:
To find out more, contact the Mersey Maritime team:
Ruth Wood, Head of Commercial: firstname.lastname@example.org / 0151 231 2959
Stacey Bradley, Business Development Executive: Stacey.email@example.com / 0151 231 2951
By Mersey Maritime
Mersey Maritime has received further national recognition as one of Europe’s leading maritime cluster organisations by winning the ‘Coastal Powerhouse’ category at the inaugural Maritime UK National Awards. The Merseyside based organisation was one of three shortlisted in the category at the prestigious event to celebrate the breadth and diversity of every aspect of the maritime industry in the United Kingdom. Hosted by the Solent Local Enterprise Partnership, an expert panel of judges revealed their final choice at a gala dinner which took place at The Leonardo Royal Southampton Grand Harbour Hotel during the Southampton International Boat Show.
Collecting and responding to winning the award, Mersey Maritime Chief Executive, Chris Shirling-Rooke said:
“On behalf of the two hundred businesses that make Mersey Maritime what it is, I am absolutely thrilled to accept this Coastal Powerhouse Award. Since we were founded in 2003, our drive has been to transform the Liverpool City Region into a Coastal Powerhouse community. Our values, passion and vision has always been about helping our members to deliver growth and jobs through collaboration across the maritime sector. Winning this award once again confirms our reputation as a major player on the national maritime stage.
“I would like to pay tribute to our fellow finalists in this category; simply being one of the top three is recognition in itself. It is also testament to the hard work and dedication that goes into making a maritime cluster organisation work for the benefit of the industry in their own particular part of the country. Collaboration and working together as we drive a Coastal Powerhouse agenda is strengthened by our joint success here at these awards, albeit that there can only be one overall winner.
“Mersey Maritime is committed to delivering the Maritime 2050 agenda set out by the Department for Transport earlier this year and is taking a leading role in the rollout of our network of regional cluster organisations throughout the UK. Our expertise in this area is recognised by both Government and the European Commission and our work will continue apace with a packed agenda for the remainder of this year and beyond.
“It has been a privilege to represent the many members we have in the Liverpool City Region at these national awards. The recognition we have received this evening will drive us even more to continue our important work in the UK’s leading industrial sector.”