Up Front

 

World Cup year provides inspiration for our team

This year marks the 21st FIFA World Cup, an international football tournament held every four years and there are many similarities between our business and the ‘beautiful game.’

We are now approaching the half way point in our current season and I am generally positive in terms of our performance ‘on the pitch’ and how trade activities are moving for Hutchison Ports.  I am being asked by customers and stakeholders how I view the trade dispute currently bubbling under between China and the US and how it could potentially impact container shipping.

I am optimistic that many consumer goods being shipped will remain unaffected by the tariffs imposed, and that mainly commodities and high-end electronics will be affected, the latter of which is carried as airfreight.

The main issues are a result of geopolitics in different regions of the world which are causing uncertainty for businesses and dampening the appetite of investors.

We recently had a team meeting where we formulated a plan for the rest of the season, we decided that we were going to focus on not conceding too many own goals and to have a strong defence and be ready to launch counter attacks at the right time during the game.

As manager of the team I am keen that we are able to protect our lead over our competitors and we can do that by taking a fresh look at costs throughout our global network of ports during every game. Of course, we are eager to score goals by bringing in new business and if we can do this as well as keeping things tight at the back, we will have a better chance of winning more games. We have made steady progress as a team but there is always room for improvement, so we can move up the league table.

Last but not least, I have also been asked about Mr. Li Ka-shing, Chairman of our parent company CK Hutchison Holdings who announced his official retirement in May and whether there will be changes in our business direction. We would all like to thank Mr. Li for his leadership and guidance during his tenure. Mr. Victor Li, currently Group Co-Managing Director and Deputy Chairman, will become Chairman and has worked closely with us for many years and knows the business very well.

As with many football clubs, senior management changes do happen and we are fortunate to have stability and continuity during this transition, which provides us with a strong foundation for the future. A successful team is built when management, players, staff and supporters are working as one and have shared ‘goals’, this is the formula that will drive our club on to success.