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British Ports Association annual conference programme confirmed

IAPH managing director, Patrick Verhoeven (left) with PLA’s Alistair Gale. Alistair has been working with the BPA to shape the 2023 conference programme, and Patrick is joining the International Ports Panel discussion on Opportunities, Challenges and Black Swans.

The speaker line-up for this year’s British Ports Association (BPA) conference features experts in key sector priorities, including the energy transition, port safety and diversity.

Hosted by the Port of London Authority (PLA), the event will run from 17 October to 19 October 2023, at the Leonardo Royal London, Tower Bridge. It is expected to attract up to 400 delegates from across UK ports and maritime, providing a forum for debating key sector trends, keeping up with the latest technology developments and networking.

Invited speakers include the new Maritime & Coastguard Agency chief executive, Virginia McVea; Department for Transport’s Maritime Director Petra Wilkinson; and Graeme Leach, chief economist at Macronomics. The closing keynote on climate adaptation is expected to be from chair of the independent Climate Change Committee, Lord Deben.

International panellists are set to include: Mike Gallacher, Ports Australia; Flemming Dalgaard, AP Moller Capital; Isabelle Ryckbost, European Sea Ports Organisation; and Patrick Verhoeven, International Association of Ports and Harbors.

Commenting on the evolving conference programme, PLA director of corporate affairs, Alistair Gale, said:

“We’re gathering a fantastic array of speakers from the UK and overseas to provide the perfect one stop event you’ll need to catch up with the latest developments in ports and maritime. Booking for the conference will assure you of great speakers and unrivalled insights. Alongside this is a busy programme of hosted receptions, with a gala dinner on the last evening.”

The PLA will be offering delegates opportunity to get afloat to tour the UK’s largest port and busiest inland waterway as part of the programme too.

Richard Ballantyne, chief executive of the British Ports Association, said:

“We are extremely excited and looking forward to this must-attend event for the ports industry. This will be an unrivalled event this year for the sector, bringing together a wide range of representatives from the UK and international ports community as well as a host of other speakers from the wider business community.”

Early bird booking options for the conference end on 31 May 2023 and there are just eight exhibition stands left. To find out more and register to attend, please visit: British Ports Association Conference – 2023 Event (

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