It’s difficult not to feel energized after a few days in Shanghai. You can feel the dynamism and vibration of the city in the restaurants and coffee shops; in the streets and shopping malls; in the breakfast room or having a late drink with your partners from SGS.

Having dinner with our partners from SGS Oil, Gas & Chemicals and Agriculture, Food & Life

This energy was also felt when we discussed the flexitank business with our customers, suppliers, partners and other manufacturers. True, many of those participating at the Container Owners Association (COA) General Meeting (20 March) or the Intermodal Asia exhibition (21-23 March) have seen better days in their businesses, and the key word in the industry (that is to say, for shipping lines, forwarders or container leasing companies) is: consolidation. The hope for an improvement is just that: hope; and not reality.

However, the mood is the complete opposite when flexitanks are mentioned. Even the most conservative estimations predict a 10% year-on-year growth for the next 5 years. All the manufacturers discussed their expansion plans, and everyone is looking for new geographies, new customers, new products, and new possibilities.

Colin Rubery, Techinical Secretary at the COA

The trend in the flexitank industry is clearly an upward one. But sustainable growth will only be possible if work continues on implementing standards, not only for manufacturers, but also for the fitting and operation of flexitanks at local levels around the world. Furthermore, every player needs to pursue safety and quality for the products. This is one of BeFlexi’s core principles, as we reach new frontiers every week with our global partner, SGS.

Presenting at Intermodal Asia

A final word for the COA, where both the Secretariat and the Board are putting a lot of effort for more effective and efficient industry cooperation. This is yet another forum where BeFlexi together with SGS work and participate to contribute for the development of the flexitank business.

If you missed my presentation at Intermodal Asia on “Flexitank market trends: What is a global flexitank operator?”, you can watch a version of it below (or here).

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