Five minutes with Nayana Nandkumar
1. What is the role of the Dubai Shipping Agents Association?
Dubai Shipping Agents Association is committed to bring all the shipping agents in Dubai under one umbrella and continuously endeavour to standardise procedures for the agent’s role in issues related to DP World and the Dubai Customs. DSAA also renders advice to members on the latest procedural changes and regulations within the Maritime industry; and also tends to members’ needs in cases of general documentation and legal issues affecting them. DSAA conducts regular classes for members on a wide range of relevant shipping topics.
2. How many members do you have & how often do you meet?
DSAA has 82 members. The various office bearers are elected every two years; and the Executive meetings of the office bearers are conducted six times a year. DSAA has a subcommittee by the name of Legal & Technical Committee who meet once in two months to discuss and find solutions to various issues affecting the industry and those faced by the members. They discuss and decide on the meetings with the Ports & Customs Officials, and on the topics for the Classes. Another subcommittee of DSAA by the name of Recreation committee meets often to discuss and organise recreation activities to bring members of the shipping fraternity together. The proposals of the subcommittees are put forward to the Executive committee for concurrence and execution.
3. How do you see the Dubai shipping industry developing over the next decade?
Development of the shipping industry is based on a plethora of factors ranging from global economy, changing population demographics, trade demand, technological advancement, environmental issues, resource limitations etc. The industry will continue to face complex demands due to these factors, nonetheless the shipping industry has weathered all such storms including the recent global recession. The developing countries will account for most of the growth in the coming decade and the future of the shipping industry seems bright. The shipping industry is the most important industry in the UAE and Dubai is known as a hub for trade, import and re-export.
4. What got you interested in the shipping industry?
Shipping being the oldest transport mode in trade has always had a fascination for me. The seagoing Captain and the multitude of problems he faces on a daily basis; the courage of the seamen, the lively nature of the ports and stevedores at loading and unloading; the different equipment used at various stages of sea transport and associated ones have always wanted me to live shipping. I’ve nurtured the dream of being in shipping at a young age, and I’ve ended up there. Since shipping is major positive factor in UAE’s economic growth and females are integral part of every developed country. That's why I found this challenging field a great one to be a part of.
5.What is your favourite aspect of working in this industry?
Mainly the varied problems and finding solutions to those which keep me on my feet every day. There is not a single day that we don't have a Maritime problem to settle; be it from the vessel operators, the agents, the cargo owners, the insurers etc. and to find out causes, prevention of such causes and solutions to such problems are my favourite aspects.
Recently I was elected to the Board Members of Women in Logistics & Transport Middle East. We encourage females to come up in their respective fields by empowering them through training. Our mission is to positively empower and encourage women into logistics and transport.. Having support from the government and private sector, mainly DP World, Dubai Customs and Dubai Chamber motivates me a lot. I also love to network which opens doors for more opportunities.