JACQUES VANDERMEIREN /ANNICK DE RIDDER

CEO/ PRESIDENT OF THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS, PORT OF ANTWERP-BRUGES

THOUGHT

Leader

AN INNOVATOR OF INDUSTRY
“INNOVATION WITH A PURPOSE.”

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In a rapidly changing world, with long-term disruptive evolutions, innovation is a powerful response. The ambition of Port of Antwerp-Bruges is to be the world’s first port that reconciles economy, people and climate. We believe in innovation as a lever towards a sustainable future. That is why the focus on innovation with a purpose is embedded in our three strategic priorities.

Jacques Vandermeiren is CEO of Port of Antwerp since 2017 and of the merged Port of AntwerpBruges since 2022.

From the coast in Zeebrugge to the banks of the Scheldt in Antwerp, we offer a customer-friendly environment where companies want and are able to grow. That is why we invest in our services, in infrastructure and capacity and in new technologies. As the gateway to the European continent, our aim is that our port can continue to play its role as a world port and a driving force for the economy of Flanders and Belgium.

As a world port and in line with the European Green Deal, Port of Antwerp-Bruges is aiming to be a climate-neutral port by 2050. We see ourselves as ‘the spark that ignites change’ and use innovation to turn today’s major challenges such as the energy transition, digitization, mobility and port security into opportunities. Together with committed partners, we invest in several pioneering projects on circular economy, alternative marine fuels, shore power, carbon capture and storage and hydrogen. Projects that will be game changers and will make our port a green port and a port of the future.

Annick De Ridder is President of Port of Antwerp since 2019 and of the merged Port of AntwerpBruges since 2022. Since 2019 she is vice mayor for the port, urban development, spatial planning and patrimony of the city of Antwerp.

We also have an essential social role: we are a port of people and for people and are aware of the impact of our activities on the environment and local residents. That is why we are investing in projects on water quality, nature, safety and mobility. Sustainable business is about daring to change, striving for quality and looking for ways to improve. That is why we engage in conversation and work together with customers, stakeholders and with society.

For these stakeholders we open up the port area as an open innovation platform where ideas can be safely demonstrated in a real industrial environment. Through this platform we can accelerate technological innovation and be a driving force behind inventing and realizing solutions for the challenges of tomorrow. Innovations such as the first autonomous sounding vessel, the first port with autonomous drones, the first port with an operational digital twin, the first remote piloted voyage, the first hydrogen tugboat and the first port with a circularity incubator in the world. These innovations enable us to continuously improve ourselves. Innovation with a purpose. It is key for being future proof. As a port, we walk the talk. We pioneer, we experiment, and we show the direction. Welcome to the port of the future.

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