The rapidly expanding International Port Community Systems Association (IPCSA) has named Hans Rook as its new chairman, as of January 2017.
Senior adviser at Portbase, the Port Community System (PCS) in the Netherlands, Hans Rook has a wealth of experience and knowledge of the IT and port logistics sector, having worked for Portbase since 2002.
He is taking over the chairmanship of IPCSA from Alan Long, chief executive of the UK’s Maritime Cargo Processing (MCP). At the same time, Javier Gallardo, director at Portic, in Spain, has become vice-chairman of IPCSA, taking over from Hans Rook, who served in this role for the past three years.
Hans Rook said: “I feel it is an honour to take over as chairman of IPCSA, and I look forward to doing this job in support of all our members. I must thank Alan Long for his hard work as chairman for the past three years – he has overseen the transformation of our association from a European to a highly respected International organisation, and the establishment of IPCSA as a source of expertise on trade facilitation and simplification at the World Customs Organization, International Maritime Organization and the UN, amongst others.”
The geographical expansion of IPCSA’s membership has enabled the association to tackle topics and issues of both regional and global importance, including Single Window, harmonisation and standardisation within the maritime and air environment, said Hans Rook.
"In the next few years I see us becoming an even more global organisation and introducing working committees additional to the ones we already have at IPCSA. An important topic will be tracking and tracing, which is already the focus of a working committee; we are very much looking at the development of a global network for PCSs.
"The year to come will be very busy as we continue to grow and, as trade facilitation, security, Single Window, the need for harmonisation of standards, and other topics come increasingly to the fore, we will be ready to advise and consult with politicians and decisionmakers at EU, UN, WCO and WTO levels."
Javier Gallardo, who leads the track and trace working committee at IPCSA, said: "A key target for IPCSA is continuing to grow our membership, particularly in parts of the world such as Asia, America and the Middle East. New membership is very important for us, because it brings new ideas and new knowledge into IPCSA.
"This is IPCSA's greatest asset – it is a place where everyone can share their expertise, discuss current issues and ask questions about their concerns in our industry."
'Track and trace' is a crucial area for PCSs, said Javier Gallardo. "The target is to create commonality to enable the exchange of information between PCSs. With more members, we will be in a better position to create more standardised worldwide services, sharing and connecting between PCSs and providing real value in terms of technology. It is vital that we work in cooperation, to deliver interoperability."
Alan Long said: "I am delighted to hand over the chairmanship of IPCSA to Hans Rook, who has a wealth of knowledge in the area of Port Community Systems and associated IT and port logistics. My three years as chairman have certainly been eventful – our reputation is now very strong in the EC, UN and IMO, and we are proud that this reputation is based on a constructive, well-informed approach, in which we are keen to share our expertise in an intelligent way.
"I look forward to seeing IPCSA continue on its remarkable expansion path, as it plays a crucial role in supporting moves towards trade facilitation and the swift, simple flow of cargo and information on a global basis."
Press release 5 January 2017