February 04, 2012

The Birth of the Apulian Ports Association

An important agreement was reached last Thursday, at the offices of the Transport and Infrastructure Commission of Regione Puglia (Apulian Region): The three regional ports of Taranto, Bari, and Brindisi laid down the foundation for the establishment of the Apulian Ports Association (App).

The objectives of App are threefold: First, the synergies of a ‘port system’ would give us the required Economies of Scale and Scope that would enable us to compete in the increasingly competitive Mediterranean arena. Our combined marketing effort, based on the complementarity of our services, will strengthen our joint position, not only in the international markets of our products, but also within international institutions (e.g. the European Union) and other policy-making forums.

Secondly, through the harmonization of operational procedures and systems (e.g. the integration of our ICT and port community platforms), App will lead to higher cost effectiveness and efficiency, thus, undoubtedly, to higher competitiveness.

Finally, and in cooperation with our excellent universities, App aims to be a research-based association. App aims to attract around it port, transport and logistics researchers from Italy and abroad and thus be present, as a lead partner, in all major projects –European or international.  The focused research agenda of the Association can keep our universities well-funded for years. The research needs of the Apulian Region alone could span decades of effort going forward.

Apulia, the ‘heel of the Italian boot’ is a region of 4 million people, while the strategic position of its ‘port system’ is unique: At the confluence of the Adriatic and Ionian Seas, and at the centre of the Mediterranean, Apulia virtually connects the West and East Motorways of the Sea (MoS) and the Adriatic corridor, ranging from Barcelona and Trieste, to Turkey; Syria; Lebanon; Israel; and Egypt. And of course, Brindisi in particular, is just a swim away for the Greek islands of Corfu; Cephalonia; Ithaca; and Zante.
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