A delegation from the General Organisation of Seaports (GOP) delegation headed by Chairman Shaikh Daij bin Salman Al Khalifa, departed last night to the Federal Republic of Germany for an official visit from 1st- 5th June. During this visit, the delegation will attend the 13th German Arab Business Forum in Berlin, as well as a key business seminar in the city of Nuremberg. As part of efforts to boost logistics cooperation in important international markets, the delegation will promote the Kingdom’s logistics and maritime credentials and explore opportunities and cooperation between the two countries in maritime and logistics industries. Representing the GOP at the 13th German-Arab Business Forum, Shaikh Daij bin Salman Al Khalifa will address the forum’s opening ceremony, while a representative from Bahrain Logistics Zone (BLZ) will showcase the Kingdom of Bahrain as a multimodal logistics centre for the European market. The highlight of the trip will be the visit to the city of Nuremberg where the delegation will participate in a logistics seminar focusing on investment opportunities in the Kingdom of Bahrain’s logistics sector. During this visit, which comes at the invitation of the Deputy Mayor of the City of Nuremberg Dr Ronald Fleck, Shaikh Daij will meet with logistics sector business leaders including Mr. Harald Leupold, General Manager of Nuremberg Freight Village, to discuss ways of developing mutual cooperation for strengthening logistics relations and promoting bi-lateral relations in areas of mutual interest. Commenting on the visit, Shaikh Daij bin Salman Al Khalifa said: “Bahrain and Germany have historically enjoyed excellent relations on political social and cultural levels and over the years the countries have experienced remarkable growth in trade, investments and financial exchanges. With strong credentials as the Kingdom’s state-of-the-art Khalifa Bin Salman Port and Bahrain Logistics Zone - representing a world class logistics hub at the centre of the Gulf region - we are looking forward to visiting Germany and participating in the German Arab Forum. We are confident that this visit will help strengthen economic, trade and investment relations in the maritime and related industries between the two countries specfically in the ports, maritime and logistics sectors.” In Berlin, a lunch is being hosted by the Near and Middle East Association’s (NUMOV) Honorary Chairman and former chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany, Dr. Gerhard Schroder, who visited the Kingdom in March 2010. Following his visit to Bahrain this year, a number of areas for co-operation have been identified between the two countries. These include construction of the first German university and a specialized German orthopedic hospital, solar energy and recycling of waste and a number of other areas that offer significant potential for mutual co-operation. Since the German-Arab Business Forum first took place in 1998, the total trade volume between Germany and Arab countries has tripled from 14billion Euro to 42 billion Euro in 2008. This impressive growth enhanced climate of mutual trust between the Arab and German partners. Bahrain’s bilateral trade with Germany has been growing steadily over the years. Its total volume of bilateral trade with European Union (EU) countries amounted close to 2.5 billion Euros in 2008 with the Kingdom’s imports accounting for around 1.5 billion. Bahrain’s non-oil trade with EU amounted to around 1.4 billion Euros in 2007 and Germany accounted for around 20% of this figure. This delegation visit to Germany comes as part of GOP’s efforts to actively promote Bahrain’s maritime and logistics industries to facilitate investments into the Kingdom from targeted countries. The upcoming Germany visit is the second of several international tours planned this year that will include India, Dubai and London.