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Thursday, January 21, 2021 

Due to the current situation caused by the coronavirus pandemic, the 29th SMM conference will take place from 2-5 February as a purely digital event, and the organisers have decided, in order to demonstrate the commitment of the international maritime trade fair to the maritime sector, to make the online conference free of charge.

Over four days, SMM Digital will deliver a programme streamed on two channels. All conferences will be streamed live to participants' computer screens. A number of discussion panels and interviews have been pre-recorded at the Hamburg exhibition complex, all in compliance with current safety and hygiene regulations. This recorded content will be broadcast on the second 'Open Stream'. The entire programme will be free of charge for all participants.

"We have made this decision to make all the expert knowledge available to a wider industry audience this year – from industry insiders and SMM enthusiasts through to interested first-time participants. In challenging times such as these, an industry event should not be a luxury experience for the industry," said Claus Ulrich Selbach, Business Unit Director – Maritime and Technology Fairs and Exhibitions, Hamburg Messe und Congress.

The conference programme will start off with the Maritime Future Summit. The focal topics include artificial intelligence, digitalisation and big data. Next, the Offshore Dialogue will explore how the power of the wind and the oceans can be converted to energy. Furthermore, it will highlight technologies for ocean monitoring and eco-friendly dismantling of offshore equipment.

Economic aspects will take the form of a discussion about the situation in the containership market and the importance of sustainability criteria for future ship financing. At the gmec – global maritime environmental congress - industry experts will exchange views about the role of shipping in dealing with the climate crisis. To complete the programme, MS&D, the international conference on maritime security and defence, will feature experts investigating current and future threats at sea, including cybercrime.

Viewers of the Conference Stream panels may submit questions online which will then be presented to the panellists at the end of each session. Additionally, on both the Conference Stream and the Open Stream, viewers may communicate with each other using a Chat feature. Through the cooperation partnership with the Enterprise Europe Network, viewers may also use the MariMatch@SMM event to contact potential business or research partners and expand their own maritime networks. To participate in MariMatch@SMM free of charge,viewers must register here by 1 February 2021. The programme is available here.

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