SHIPPINGInsight ended its three-day conference facing the benefits of innovation, along with the reality of…
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While we watch with grave concern the fate of the invasion of Ukraine, the threats to shipping and the mariners affected by the restriction on ship transits, we are also made aware of how critical shipping is to the world. While this event is not in the same category as the Ever Given last year, the world is again seeing the impact of global events on their everyday lives—and shipping’s role in that.
Port workers in the UK and elsewhere refusing to offload crude oil and gas imports of Russian oil are making statements of how critical their opinion is to global trade. Shipping lines such as MSC and others supporting the fight for democracy by restricting their deliveries to Russia, with the exception of humanitarian supplies, demonstrate their role in the supply network. And the combined efforts of citizens and governments to repatriate Ukrainian mariners back to defend their homeland is awe-inspiring.
There are going to be some hardships in the coming months– gas at the pump is already skyrocketing; food is predicted to get more expensive and even semiconductor chips are affected. I hope that citizens recognize these impacts are the price of democracy and that governments band together to meet the needs of those facing extreme disruption.
The years since World War II have seen a globalization of trade—and of societies. We must, as a global society, protect our rules-based values with shipping playing a critical role.