Modesty and shyness was never the strongest characteristic of the Dutch Business Community. Our Dutch friends can however through history rightfully claim credit for many achievements and be proud with good reasons. Occasionally however they tend to take their ambitions for real well ahead of that reality and proclaim such reality through strong and convincing voice and print. In public places such as pubs or sunny terraces one can usually pick-out Dutch by the decibel levels of their conversations and over-self-confident behaviour. The good news is that evolution to civilisation is a continued process and today they already have grasped the taste of the Burgundy lifestyle and are not afraid to open their purses for a good experience – it was different in past times but there is hope.
Today however they are again confusing wishful thinking with reality. “Rotterdam – Maritime Capital of Europe”!!?? So jointly declares the Rotterdam Port Authority, The City of Rotterdam, Dordrecht and the Rotterdam Maritime Board on this wonderful day in September. Conveniently they refer to the “World Economic Forum” statement that Rotterdam is the Smartest port in the World. Is being smart all it takes to be the Maritime Capital of Europe”?
Let us consult THE authority – Menon Economics. In reference, Menon Economics was named Consultancy Firm of the Year 2015 by the magazine Kapital and Konsulentguiden. Earlier winners of this award include First House and Boston Consulting Group. The award is based on their outstanding ability to source and utilize relevant data and to communicate the findings clearly and concisely in their reports and presentations. An authority and publishers of “THE LEADING MARITIME CAPITALS OF THE WORLD – 2O17” report.
MENON looks into all ports in the world and evaluates them in the context of Maritime activities based on 1) Shipping, 2) Finance & Law, 3) Maritime Technology, 4) Ports & Logistics and 5) Attractiveness and Competitiveness. In the overall ranking of “LEADING MARITIME CAPITALS OF THE WORLD – 2O17” we find the Port of Singapore still on the highest podium. The ranking is based on Objective Indicators and Expert assessments. For Singapore both scores show a strong # 1 position. Congratulations to the PSA.
And here comes the surprise. In the same ranking – Global – we find Hamburg on a credible 2nd place. I apologise for my ignorance; last time I looked on a map of the world I found Hamburg in Europe. Would it than be safe to conclude that Hamburg is the “Maritime Capital of Europe”? Unless our friends in Rotterdam have found another reliable source of evaluation and analysis showing another “Maritime Capital of Europe” index. Maybe the work of Maurice Jansen is conveniently claimed as basis for the self-declared “Maritime Capital of Europe” status. He is after all an authority in ……… Rotterdam.
But lets keep MENON Economics as compass and see what more we can learn from their “THE LEADING MARITIME CAPITALS OF THE WORLD – 2O17” report.
- Shipping: Hamburg in 2nd place and no sign of Rotterdam in the Top 5
- Finance & Law: London in 1st place and no sign of Rotterdam in the Top 5
- Maritime Technology: Oslo in first spot and nowhere Rotterdam to be found in the Top 5
- Ports & Logistics: Yes!! On spot 3 we find Rotterdam.
- Attractiveness & Competitiveness: Oslo, Copenhagen and Hamburg in the Top 5 but no Rotterdam to be found.
So where is the “Maritime Capital of Europe” ??