The Biennial Technical Visit (BTV) is PIANC’s signature international event for Young Professionals (YPs).
YP-Com Chair for PIANC Australia & New Zealand, Rodney Hancock was invited to attend this year’s event in Singapore as a Delegate for the National Section. Vice Chair of YP-Com’s Asia Pacific region, Tom Shand was also in attendance and was instrumental in the preparation and delivery of the event.
This year’s gathering was the first hosted by an Asian country and as Rodney reports, “it set a very high standard with strong and diverse attendance, a great line-up of presentations including PIANC A-NZ Board member Ron Cox, some truly fantastic technical site visits, and of course some convivial social functions throughout the week.”
“Congratulations to the Singapore National Section on a job well done and to all YPs from around the world who contributed to a successful event! I felt proud to be a part of PIANC and to see the future of our industry in such capable hands.”
Summary of the Event
Day 0: Monday, 10 June
The BTV kicked off on Monday with a guided walk along Singapore’s historical Maritime Trail followed by a productive Board meeting for the Young Professionals Commission (YP Com), involving YP Delegates across 17 National Sections.
The Board meeting covered a range of topics, including:
- Notable updates from regions and countries on YP Com participation and activities.
- YP participation in Working Groups.
- Summary of Best Performing YP National Section award.
- Summary of current and upcoming vacancies for YP roles.
- Discussion and planning for upcoming major PIANC events, with a focus on YP events.
Minutes from the YP-Com Board meeting were recorded by the YP-Com International Secretary Rodrigo Molto.
Day 1: Tuesday, 11 June
On Tuesday, the formal BTV conference proceedings kicked off. The morning session was held at the Port of Singapore Authority (PSA) Building, which offered great views over the bustling harbour. Following the opening speeches, there were four great presentations from keynote speakers, including our own Professor Ron Cox. In the afternoon, we moved to the Maritime and Port Authority’s Port Operations Control Centre (POCC) where we learned about the Port’s incredibly busy shipping activity and how this is managed by the MPA. This included a tour of one of their high-tech VTIS facilities. Following a visit to the Maritime Gallery where we absorbed Singapore’s rich maritime history, the day was brought to a scenic conclusion with a view of the sunset from the top of the famous Marina Bay Sands hotel.
Day 2: Wednesday, 12 June
On Wednesday, the BTV moved to the Suntec Convention Centre for a full day of technical presentations. Four keynote speakers covered an array of topics in the morning from innovative research, to fender fabrication, to the design and construction of large-scale block quay walls. In the afternoon, it was time for the YPs to step up and impress the crowd with a variety of presentations showcasing innovation in the maritime sector. It was fantastic to see presenters come from such diverse backgrounds and nationalities.
Day 3: Thursday, 13 June
On the last day of the BTV, conference attendees were treated to two exceptional technical site visits. The first was to Jurong Port where the group learned about some of the innovative and sustainable projects they are undertaking, including the world’s largest common-user cement terminal and the world’s largest port terminal solar panel installation.
From there the group moved on to Tuas, where Singapore is currently developing their next generation port with an incredible 65 million TEU capacity. Attendees were lucky enough to see this mega project under construction, courtesy of Dredging International and MPA. Words cannot do justice to the scale of the project, but suffice to say the group was truly awed to see the action up close on their guided boat tour.