Israeli shipping firm eyes India as manpower, training and trade hub
Thursday, 21 June 2012 | 11:00
Ofer Shipping, an arm of the Tel Aviv-headquartered diversified Ofer Group with interests in shipping, aviation, high technology areas and private equity, has now drawn up plans to turn India into its global manpower sourcing and training hub and its recently set up Kolkata operations into a ‘perfect gateway to trade in south & southeast Asia’. Ofer Shipping, a global leader in shipping has initiated this move when the parent company is on a fleet expansion drive, from 100 to 120 vessels.
Ofer Shipping group mostly manages chemical, oil tankers across the globe and have under its portfolio ships from Amsterdam-based Ace Tankers, formerly a joint venture between Eurochem Maritime-Chemship and Aksay Shipping & Trading, and Zim Integrated Shipping, among others. Zim’s fleet comprises over 100 modern vessels, including mega-vessels of 8,000 and 10,000 (twenty-foot equivalent unit) TEUs, with a total carrying capacity of over 337,000 TEU. It operates nearly 358,806 containers (582,000 TEU), of which 34,250 are special equipment containers.
Shankar Das, official spokesman of the large Israeli group told Financial Chronicle, “Israel’s largest private shipping company is now gearing up to expand its Indian operations, buoyed by the prospects of industrial growth and Kolkata being the gateway to trade in south & southeast Asia. Recruitment, training and trade would be the areas of focus for the company.”
He said that the group, which at present has a fleet of 100 vessels, was in the process of expanding its fleet to 120 vessels over the next two years and as a result the requirement of mariners was also on the rise. The company, which already works with few leading training institutes in Delhi and Chennai, would now be working with larger number of training institutes across the country to source its manpower.
“We are in arrangement with select training institutes in the country for recruitment of young adventurers who have decided to make adventures at sea to be their passion and profession. Then we do have provision for excellent in house training facilities as well,” said Das.
The multi-billion dollar Israeli group, which at present has offices in Mumbai and Kolkata, may soon set up one or two more offices in the country to back up its expansion plans, he indicated.