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Marina, Soname to launch first Cebu Maritime Expo

Marina, Soname to launch first Cebu Maritime Expo
Yashika F. Torib April 12, 2023

CEBU Maritime Expo (CME) 2023, the first of its kind in Visayas and Mindanao, is set to be launched tomorrow, April 13, at the IL Corso Lifemalls, South Reclamation Properties in Cebu City.

The three-day event is hosted by the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers (Soname) in collaboration with the Maritime Industry Authority (Marina).

Themed "Navigating toward maritime advancement," CME 2023 will showcase everything about the maritime industry and demonstrate Cebu's potential in the niche. It is also seen to usher Cebu as a top maritime hub and a major destination for global navigation lines.

The event is expected to interest the general public in the industry's products and services. Expecting a draw of about more than 500 visitors per day, CME 2023 will bring together a congregation of experts and pioneers, industry stakeholders, and decision-makers creating an avenue for showcasing innovative ideas, state-of-the-art designs, latest launches and specialty services, and exploring investments under one roof.

CME 2023 will feature indoor and outdoor exhibitors converging around the whole atrium of IL Corso Lifemalls, while the waterfront will feature an array of vessels from the dependable Philippine banca to functional boats to luxury yachts from the local industry and from shipbuilders in the world.

"Soname has been aspiring to unify an entire ecosystem to retain focus on our maritime industry and the spaces it represents, with emphasis on innovation and digital transition. The CME is the fruition of the marriage between our aspiration and hard work," said Soname Secretary Doyle Figueras.

Marina to introduce Cebu as 'top maritime city'

The expo is seen as an important step toward keeping pace with Marina's comprehensive 10-year Maritime Industry Development Plan (MIDP) which includes, in its eighth flagship, the development of a global maritime hub. Marina plans to unveil during this trade show its vision to position Cebu among the global ranks as a top maritime city.

"With the Philippines recognized as one of the top providers of both seafarers and officers to the global marine fleet, and with Cebu already a bustling port, Cebu City is ready for exponential growth," the CME 2023 organizers said in a statement.

"Further, CME 2023 compellingly aligns with Cebu's roadmap initiative and bold vision for primacy in the maritime industry and beyond. With Cebu having easy access to an international audience, the event is expected to generate economic benefits, stimulate interest and extra revenues, and further reinvestments. Hence, CME provides the potential to leverage the momentum for sustainable growth opportunities," it further stated.

Reviving Cebu's boating industry

The CME is also expected to revive Cebu's local boating industry and boost it through sustainable tourism and strategic implementations of best practices.

"The local boating industry is not only a vital economic force for Cebu but also a quintessential factor in its attractiveness. Reviving and developing this industry is a priority and is only appropriate as it is part of our time-honored seafaring traditions," Soname's CME project lead Jose Dupal-ag said.

With the presence of two of the world's top shipbuilding firms and boatyards in the province, the industry is expecting a multiplying workforce, economic growth and continuing success stories.

"The first edition of the CME is an exceptional project for us. With great enthusiasm, we look forward to this in-person gathering with the maritime industry as the focal point. Cebu has a lot to offer the global market and with our burning passion for the maritime industry, we have a responsibility to encourage and promote all initiatives dedicated to the industry," Soname PRO Jerome Manuel said.

"CME 2023 could be a pioneering platform to represent the strategic essence of a strong synergy between private and government agencies. Through unprecedented attention accompanied by compelling support, and a unity of purpose to push where possible; even in the face of many changing threats and trends including a pandemic, we can steer Cebu as a global navigation destination and be a fully integrated maritime hub," said Marina RO-7 Regional Director Emmanuel Carpio.

Soname is a Philippine-recognized nonprofit, professional society of individual members serving the maritime and offshore industries and their suppliers. It maintains being a key enabler in helping the country navigate towards maritime advancement.

Marina is an agency of the Philippine government responsible for integrating the development, promotion and regulation of the maritime industry in the country.