CILTNA GTA Region Chapter conference offers “mini outlook” on growth trends, sustainability

by Canadian Shipper

MISSISSAUGA, Ont.–The Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport in North America held its Mini Outlook Transportation Conference September 23 at the Mississauga Convention Centre.

The event featured a keynote speech by Howard Eng, the President and CEO of the Greater Toronto Airports Authority, who talked about the importance of ensuring Toronto’s Pearson International airport can perform as a global hub.

“We have decreased aeronacutical fees 30% over the past 5 years and have held landing fees steady for 3 years. We are evolving. We’re supporting increased traffic by working with and listening to our partners, focusing on safety, people, technology and efficiency,” Eng said. 

A founding member of CivicAction’s Regional Transportation Champions Council, Toronto Pearson is the premier international gateway hub for Canada, Eng noted, and based on a Frontier Economics study, has a $ 35.4 billion dollar economic impact on the province of Ontario.

“By 2030 it is forecast to have an economic value of almost $59 billion dollars or 7% of Ontario GDP,” he said.

Some 80% of cargo at Pearson is moved in passenger aircraft as belly cargo. The year 2013 saw 425,000 tonnes of cargo moved via Pearson. In 20 years this is forecast to be 1 million tonnes, Eng added. 

He championed the Canadian system of moving the running of airports out of federal government coffers.

“We are committed to ensuring there is capacity in place while acknowledging we would have to change and adapt as circumstances evolve,” said Eng.

Dorothy Chan, president of CILT International, Hong Kong, and an expert in urban transport planning and management, was invited to the event as a speaker, and gave examples of sustainable transport development in Hong Kong, which faces high population density and urban congestion. 

Hong Kong has long restricted the number of cars circulating in the city, and champions streamlined, multimodal transport options. 

Hong Kong’s airport, the number one freight airport worldwide, may expand to a three runway system in 2023, Chan noted, and there is a Shenzhen-Hong Kong rail express link in the planning stages.

“We need to be connected to the rest of the Pearl River delta area,” she said. 

Hong Kong employs an R+P model for funding railways, developing property above railway stations and along rail lines. to finance their construction.

The city’s common goal of “SMILE”: sustainable development, mobility, innovation, lifestyle and environment, sees the city setting an example for mainland Chinese municipalities, who are increasingly seeking Hong Kong’s advice on how to better manage their own congestion issues.

CILTNA’s GTA Region Chapter also heard from Transportation Media’s Publisher Lou Smyrlis, who drilled down into some important stats from the Transportation Trends 2014 and beyond report (available by request via lou@transportationmedia.ca), and from Jim Eckler, President, Eckler Associates, whose research and comments about unsustainability in the Canadian Healthcare industry will be included in an upcoming Canadian Shipper report of Healthcare supply chains.

Allan O’Dette, the president and CEO of the Ontario Chamber of Commerce, was the final speaker at the event, and detailed a program run by the Chamber that aims to encourage SME’s to increase their export market access and business skills with emerging markets.

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