Building confidence in the future of Norway’s maritime cluster, despite current challenges in many sectors, is one of the key topics at Nor-Shipping, the bi-annual event that opened in Oslo on 1 June.
About 35,000 delegates from 70 countries are expected to attend more than 100 events during the weeklong event that celebrates its 50th anniversary this year. “Norway has been a leading maritime nation for generations, and I am confident that it will remain one in the future,” said Sturla Henriksen, CEO of the Norwegian Shipowners’ Association.
Ocean Talent Camp, housed in tents outside the City Hall, is hoping to attract about 10,000 young people aged 13 to 19 in order to show them the possibilities that the shipping industry offers them, said Nor-Shipping director Vidar Pederstad. “Presenting the possibilities the shipping sector can offer young people is always important, but it is more than usually so now as jobs are cut,” he said.
A sharp fall in oil prices has forced several Norwegian and Norwegian-controlled offshore services companies to reduce their workforce due to a reduction in activities in the oil and gas exploration and production sector.
However, Pederstad said it is important to look beyond the current weak cycle and ensure that the maritime and shipping sectors remain interesting career options to young people.
Oslo’s mayor, Fabian Strang, also welcomed the industry’s efforts to reach out to young people and underlined the importance of maritime students to the sector’s future.