StocExpo 2013 conference:

industry’s biggest questions answered

  • February 20, 2013
  • StocExpo 2013 conference:
    StocExpo 2013 conference:

Is the abundance of LPG an international game-changer? What are the implications of the ‘perfect storm’ facing European refining? What changes are needed to ensure survival for the next generation of storage terminal operators? Which technologies will genuinely transform safety? These are just some of the questions 25 of the world’s biggest authorities in the bulk liquid storage sector will address when they speak at the StocExpo conference, on 19–21 March 2013 at Antwerp Expo. 

Last year an incredible 100% of delegates rated the StocExpo conference content as excellent, and the organisers have worked hard to maintain this standard. The first day is focused on economic and macro-economic issues and trends. For instance, Chris Hunt, Director General of UKPIA, will assess the ‘Challenges facing the bulk liquid sector.’ These undoubtedly include refining in the current economic climate and the pressures to change and adapt, but Chris Hunt will also consider legislative developments and environmental regulations.

The Eurozone crisis has affected oil demand and driven refinery closures.  Mark Lewis, Managing Director of Facts Global Energy Group, will examine the true implications for oil storage needs, international refining trends and whether the demand for imports in Europe has changed. His session entitled the ‘European oil trade sector – market outlook now and in the mid-term’ will round off with an assessment of US gas and the abundance of LPG – speculating whether this is an international game-changer.

To provide an invaluable practical insight into ‘Terminal Capacity Trends’ Xavier Vanrolleghem, Commercial Manager of the Antwerp Chemical Cluster at the Port of Antwerp, is sharing a case study of how the port is adapting and changing within the current challenging market.

Many trends are driving greater supply chain consolidation, so fittingly supply management challenges and tools are also explored on the opening day. Schneider Electric’s Al Rivero, Vice President of Supplier Solutions and Francois Van Noten, European Project Manager of the Petroleum Supplier Segment will particularly look at the initiative in Europe to implement supply management systems and its impact on operational efficiency within terminals. This will include a country analysis of the terminals in scope for 2013 and 2014, plus an appraisal of the benefits such as improved forecasting.

There is much talk about the opportunities provided by diversification in the crude market, Alan Gelder, Head of Oils Research at Wood Mackenzie, kicks off the second day with a frank data-based examination of the ‘Diversification challenges and the market for European crude’. This will include an assessment of crude oil production, European refinery crude needs and evolving trade patterns, plus the all-important implications for the storage industry.

‘Risk mitigation and safety best practice’ are also covered in detail on day two. Within this overarching theme, and drawing on case studies, Henry Persson, Project Manager at the SP Technical Research Institute of Sweden, is exploring ethanol fire safety and how you mitigate the risks associated with the storage of water miscible products.

People sit at the heart of safety and, with this in mind, John Reynolds, Director at Fire Safety Training will talk about ‘Negligence and personal safety & training’ specifically looking at how you train and ensure competence in high hazard environments.  Expanding on this theme, Filip Coumans, Senior Adviser at BST Solutions will consider how you develop a culture of reliability and prevent serious injury. He argues that simply relying on past performance, and processes which look good on paper is not enough; leaders must go deeper and change the culture within their organisations, and understand how their own behavior affects it.

On day three the focus shifts to ‘New technological developments for tank storage safety.’ Chaired by Jeffrey Hill, Senior Engineer at Hayward Baker, many of the sessions on this day will use case studies to bring everyone up to speed with changes in the design and construction of tank foundations, the latest modifications and newest technologies that enhance tank storage safety.

Commenting on the programme, Matt Benyon, Managing Director of StocExpo, says: “Europe is a crucial industry hub facing so many issues, opportunities and threats at the moment.  For senior decision makers working in the tank storage sector, it is difficult to get a clear distillation of what this all means.  Our speaker programme will provide some much-needed clarity.

“We’ve asked the market’s experts to share their very latest thinking, data and analysis on all of the key trends.  To ensure delegates leave with more than just insights, we’ve real-world practical examples to share and we’ve also got a wealth of new technologies for them to see. This combination of great content and speakers explains why record numbers have already booked to attend this year’s conference.”

For delegates who want to further explore new products and services, there is the StocExpo exhibition running alongside the paid-for conference. This will feature over 180 companies from more than 29 countries. Both major names and smaller exciting market players spanning the entire supply spectrum will showcase their newest technologies, making it one of the world’s biggest gatherings of tank storage innovation.

Indeed, the international importance of StocExpo has just been acknowledged by the Global Association of the Exhibition Industry, which has made it a UFI Approved Event.  This is a major accolade; only 903 events in the world were given this approval in 2012.

Matt Benyon concludes: “The UFI approval underscores how truly global StocExpo is. We’ve world-renowned speakers plus attendees and exhibitors flocking to the show from all over the world. Anyone who is involved in this market place needs to be at StocExpo in March.”

StocExpo takes place from 19 to 21 March 2013 at Antwerp Expo, Belgium. To find out more about attending visit