2020 Conference Objective

Through intensive programming and high-quality networking, the 2020 JOC Breakbulk & Project Cargo Conference will generate value for project and breakbulk cargo shippers and other members of the supply chain. The conference program, under the direction of the JOC’s expert editorial staff, will examine key market and industry pressures, opportunities, and strategic challenges facing the sector as its practitioners navigate the world’s most complex transportation supply chains.

Theme: Seeking Transparency
in a Volatile Project and Breakbulk World

A fragile recovery began to take hold in 2019, as project cargo shippers reported healthy project order books and backlogs. Module and heavy-deck carriers sensed opportunity, while freight rates for the MPV-HL sector and prices for secondhand ships inched higher. Owner/operator consolidation, a historically slim vessel orderbook, and the reality of IMO 2020 are all kicking in, perhaps foreshadowing a healthier market from the carrier perspective.


In the long run, investments in power generation, particularly wind energy, will be influential market drivers. In the short run, however, the project and breakbulk sector is holding its breath, riding out geopolitical uncertainty, oil price volatility, and a slowing global economy. Will the flimsy recovery hold, moving the needle from “hopeful pessimism” to “confident optimism?” Are there any certainties? How can the sector position itself to prosper?


Meanwhile, the project and breakbulk sector is slowly accepting modern expectations for transparency, safety, integrity, and digitization — required by project owners, expected by a new generation of project talent, and necessary to stay competitive in an increasingly interconnected world. How will the industry address these challenges as 2020 unfolds?


The 2020 JOC Breakbulk & Project Cargo Conference will explore these questions in depth when we convene on April 27-29, 2020, in New Orleans.

Topics to be Explored:

  • Global and US economic outlook and forecast.

  • Expert market outlook: Oil and gas, and renewables.

  • The state of steel 2020.

  • Building a transparent safety culture in project logistics.

  • Transport assurance from the EPC perspective.

  • Approaches and methods for creating transparency in the project supply chain.

  • Offshore wind: Can and will the US supply chain fill the looming logistics gap?

  • Crossing the lines: Heavy-haul transport and permitting challenges in the US.

  • Navigating the import maze: Sanctions, tariffs, quotas, and sourcing.

  • IMO 2020: Where are we now?

  • Updates: Project logistics contracting, ISPM15, Ex-Im Bank Financing, Incoterms 2020.