The WISTA MED 2012 welcomed delegates from Cyprus, Greece, France, Italy, Turkey, Spain and the Netherlands. Female professionals in leading positions from all over the Mediterranean and beyond gathered to celebrate WISTA but also to network and create new business opportunities and relationships.
The two-day event kicked off on Friday afternoon with a Cocktail and Dinner at Le Meridien Limassol Spa and Resort where all overseas guests had the opportunity to meet the local WISTA members. It is noted that WISTA Cyprus is one of the youngest National WISTA Associations and this was the first Regional event organized by Cyprus.
On Saturday morning (23rd June) WISTA Cyprus hosted a conference with the theme “Why Cyprus? An optimal business base”. Despite the financial problems that Cyprus is currently facing, the island is still an ideal place for shipping and trading related companies and the speakers gave excellent presentations encouraging all foreign delegates to consider Cyprus for their operations. Speakers came from a wide range of sectors within the maritime cluster and they were as follows:
1. Capt. Eugen-Henning Adami – President of the Cyprus Shipping Chamber
2. Mr. Solon Kassinis – Director Energy Service, Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Tourism
3. Mrs. Athena Chrysostomou – Maritime Affairs Officer, Department of Merchant Shipping Cyprus
4. Mr. Evgenios C. Evgeniou – CEO, PwC Cyprus
5. Capt. Eberhard Koch, Chairman and CEO, Oesterreichischer Lloyd Seereederei (Cyprus) Ltd
6. Mrs. Karin Orsel – President, WISTA International
7. Mrs. Beatrice Witvoet – President, WISTA France
8. Mrs. Despina Panayiotou Theodosiou – President WISTA Cyprus
The audience actively participated in discussions, making the conference interactive and beneficial to all attendees. It was also announced during the conference that WISTA Cyprus would bid for the organization of the WISTA Int’l AGM and Conference 2014. Members and guests welcomed this announcement with a cordial applause. The decision of who will be the hosting country will be taken during this year’s WISTA Int’l AGM and Conference, which will be held in Paris from 3-5 October.
The audience was made out of not only WISTA members but also Ambassadors, representatives of the Cyprus Shipping Chamber and other associations as well as representatives from many shipping companies based in Cyprus. There was also interest expressed by Cypriot banks, which are in the process of forming new shipping departments.
The conference ended with lunch and the rest of the day was dedicated to WISTA members who were taken on a small tour, so they could be introduced to the beauties of rural Cyprus and later on WISTA Cyprus hosted a Farewell Dinner as a thank you gesture to its Members and Friends.
It is worth noting that there was a delegation from WISTA Turkey attending the two-day event and it was mutually decided by both WISTA Cyprus and WISTA Turkey that the two Associations, together with the help of WISTA Greece, would try to find ways to co operate in a non-political manner as to the benefit of Shipping but also to enhance business relationships between the two countries.