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Jean-Francois Garcia, General Manager – Sales France / Africa at Trelleborg Marine Systems

Towards the end of March, I attended the 11th Intermodal Africa North 2013 in Dakar, Senegal. Intermodal Africa North 2013 is the largest annual Containerised Ports, Shipping Transport Logistics Exhibition and Conference on the African continent and so provided an ideal platform for us to share our comprehensive range of equipment, ideas and best practice with those in attendance.

After investing heavily in strengthening our global reach with the addition of a local ‘feet on the ground’ presence in the region towards the end of last year, it was essential we made the most of what is undoubtedly one of the largest events of its kind within the EMEA Corridor.

At Intermodal Africa North 2013 we took the opportunity to exhibit a number of our industry leading products including our new easy slide in, slide out solution for PE Pad replacement which promises to not only reduce maintenance downtime from days to just hours, but also lowers the total cost of ownership.

I also took to the stage to discuss the significance of applying the right technology to successfully reduce operational costs, including the importance of specifying high quality rubber fenders to ensure longer lifetime and the significance of fender maintenance.

Last year, having developed new analytical and chemical tests to investigate the difference between high quality and low cost fenders, we found some rather damning differences between two fenders which claimed to be designed to the same specification. Ultimately, decision makers need to open their eyes to the varying quality on offer when buying on the basis of short term cost savings and realise that they’re not only causing unprecedented levels of downtime, but also putting ports at risk.

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