Over the past 30 years, the European shipbuilding, repair and conversion industry has seen substantial rationalisations, mergers and consolidation. While there has been a reduction in its market share, the industry has enjoyed relatively greater success in the high added value specialist vessel, ship-repair and the marine equipment sector.
Against a background of increasing shipbuilding capacity in China and South Korea and continuing arguments on shipbuilding subsides, how can the European maritime manufacturing sector maintain and increase its market share? Through the “LeaderSHIP 2015” initiative, the European shipbuilding and shiprepair industry has defined a long term strategy to develop appropriate policies to strengthen the competitiveness and ensure sustainable growth of the industry. This strategy envisages a knowledge-based industry for both product and production process, concentrating on more complex vessels. Research, Design and Innovation (RDI) are a key factor in this strategy.
In order for the European shipbuilding, repair and conversion industry to maintain and improve its competitiveness, it is essential that it develops and employs of the latest technologies in design, engineering and production. The European Shipbuilding, Repair and Conversion – The Future conference will provide an opportunity to examine the future needs for RDI, and to present current work in that and related sectors.