Northern Powerhouse maritime agenda gets coast-to-coast boost

By Hull Daily Mail | Posted: 24 Mar 2017

Two leading maritime organisations have joined forces to stimulate growth in the marine, ports and energy business in the North.

Team Humber Marine Alliance (THMA) and Mersey Maritime have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) aimed at collaborating and presenting a united front in the Northern Powerhouse initiative.

Mark O'Reilly, chief executive and chairman of THMA, said: "This agreement strengthens the offer of Yorkshire and Humber and the North West regions.

"We are united in our mission to win more business for our members and our combined wealth of skills and capabilities are a force to be reckoned with.

"Both areas have made great strides with the transformational Green Port Hull and Liverpool2 investments, and we want to capitalise on these opportunities, enhance the skills base and create sustainable jobs."

The MoU was signed at the third Mersey Maritime Industry Awards, held at Liverpool Football Club, which Mr O'Reilly and THMA vice-chairman Camilla Carlbom were attending.

THMA is now finalising plans for its fifth annual Offshore Wind Connections conference and exhibition at Bridlington Spa, on May 3 and 4.

Chris Shirling-Rooke, chief executive of Mersey Maritime, said: "We are really excited to have signed this agreement with Team Humber.

"It is an excellent organisation that has done a lot of good work. "Team Humber has the same vision as Mersey Maritime and, by working together, sharing industry knowledge and best practices, we hope to significantly increase activity and investment in the maritime industry across the two regions we represent."

It is expected that the initiative will encourage member companies to enter into joint ventures and be a catalyst for innovation as well as increase access to funding and skills development.

The two organisations have been in talks since they were introduced in 2015 through a UK Northern Powerhouse trade mission visiting offshore wind regions and organisations in the US.

This initiative builds on a growing relationship between the Humber and Mersey regions across academia, public sector and business.

Both THMA, with its 230-plus member companies, and Mersey Maritime are not-for profit business development organisations focusing on the maritime, ports and energy sectors.

With unsurpassed knowledge of capabilities in the region, THMA has become a driving force in the Humber's growth as an offshore wind player.

Mersey Maritime is a private-public sector partnership that represents the interests of one of the largest UK clusters of marine and maritime businesses outside London.

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