Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Ministers Gather to Discuss Funding for Vital Freight and Logistics Infrastructure

Undercapacity Looms Large as Huge Traffic Volume Increases Predicted by OECD
Shipping News Feature

WORLDWIDE – GERMANY - Today sees the opening of the three day International Transport Forum at the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) meeting in Leipzig at which the responsible ministers from the fifty four member countries will consult and debate in an attempt to thrash out the future of funding transport infrastructure, a matter of grave concern to all in the freight and logistics sector in many parts of the world.

The OECD says that an explosion of demand for greater mobility and a predicted rise in container transport in some regions coupled with a general tightening of public budgets poses serious problems for those tasked with allocating the dwindling funds. According to OECD calculations air passenger travel is projected to double, air transport to triple and container handling in ports to quadruple by 2030. Investment needs for transport infrastructure to 2030 are estimated at $11 trillion for ports, airports and key rail lines alone whilst current infrastructure could accommodate only a 50% increase in demand at best.

Interested parties have better access than ever to the ongoing proceedings via a live webcast of the discussions plus full details on the Forum website and Twitter or you can follow the hashtag #fundingtransport. Key topics up for discussion include attracting private finance and ensuring predictable funding and taking stock of Public-Private Partnerships plus prioritising investments and the quest of aviation for financial sustainability.

Guest speakers include Nobel laureate Amartya Sen and John Micklethwait, editor-in-chief of The Economist newspaper, Temel Kotil, CEO of Turkish Airlines, Jichang Zhou, Chairman of China Communications Construction Company (CCCC) and David Fass, CEO (EMEA) of Macquarie Group and ministers attending represent virtually every important world economic power.