Minister of Economics to open SMM 2004

Thursday, July 15, 2004
The opening speech at the SMM 2004 will be held by Federal Minister of Economics and Labor Wolfgang Clement. The official opening of the 21st Shipbuilding, Machinery & Marine Technology, International Trade Fair Hamburg, will be in the Kaisersaal of the Hamburg City Hall on 27 September, that is the evening before the first day of the Fair. The Fair itself from September 28 to October 2will feature more than 1,400 exhibitors from over 50 countries at the Hamburg Fair site, showing the latest technologies and products from all areas of the maritime industry.

Following acceptance by Chancellor Gerhard Schröder of patronage of the SMM for the third time this year, the presence of the Minister of Economic Affairs is another clear sign from the Federal Government of its commitment to the maritime industry. "I will be delighted to officiate at the opening of the SMM at the Hamburg City Hall", writes Minister Clement. The shipbuilding industry and its leading trade fair evidently have a very prominent position in the economic and technological priorities of the Cabinet in Berlin. The SMM has a reputation in the global shipbuilding industry as a source of stimulus and a seismograph of economic and technological development. Mr. Clement went on to express his hopes that the SMM 2004 would give new impulses to shipbuilding in Germany, and would be a "complete success".

Other speakers at the opening ceremony will be Ole von Beust (Mayor of Hamburg), Jürgen Kennemann (Chairman of the Management Boards of the two Aker shipyards MTW and Warnowwerft and Chairman of the SMM Consultative Committee) and Rolf Westfal-Larsen (Chairman of the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS)).

The SMM 2004 is expected to attract more than 1400 exhibitor companies from over 50 nations and 40,000 visitors from the whole of the world. The SMM 2004, as the world's premier shipbuilding trade fair, presents a comprehensive range of maritime hi-tech products and services; it is a trendsetter and platform for innovation and knowledge transfer in all areas of the maritime industry.

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