“expo GasTrans” trade fair premiere

A special exhibition was dedicated to this logistics area for the first time as part of the expo PetroTrans 2018. A forum unique in its kind in Europe for transshipment and transport of liquid gases is already establishing itself in Kassel this year.

What started out as a special exhibition within the expo PetroTrans 2018 has now developed into a genuine “trade fair inside the trade fair”: Between 1st and 3rd October 2020, the expo GasTrans will be adding a pioneering new prospect – transport and transshipment of liquefied gases – to the expo PetroTrans, an industry forum unique in Europe.

Why however is a logistics trade fair that has focused for many years on transport and transshipment of liquid energy sources now dealing with the topic of gas?

There are several major reasons for this, as the managing directors of the trade fair organisers AVR and planetfair, Thomas Klocke and Ingo Klöver, explain: “first of all of course, the exhibitors’ and visitors’ interest was a decisive factor for us. When we saw how enthusiastically the special exhibition on liquid gas was received in 2018, it was only logical to develop it further in a structured manner and present it in a broader setting. The high demand from exhibitors at the premiere of the “expo GasTrans” indicates that we are absolutely right”, says Ingo Klöver.

“The advantage of a specialist trade fair like the expo PetroTrans is that we as event organisers can engage in an intensive dialogue with the exhibitors. We realised that many mineral oil suppliers do not merely transport heating oil, diesel and petrol, but also heating gas, liquefied petroleum gas and in the future, increasing amounts of liquid natural gas”, adds Thomas Klocke.

The market developments and framework conditions set by politics for both the transport and the building sectors are equally important. In order to achieve the ambitious CO2 emission targets, gas is prioritised a transitional technology which is set to replace fuel oil in heat generation and be used as an environmentally friendly fuel in road transport – especially for heavy goods vehicles. Extensive subsidy programmes worth billions in both segments are boosting demand and leading to increased expansion of infrastructure such as LNG service stations. It is intended to build such as service station very 400 to 500 kilometres, which will then need to be supplied with the alternative fuel.

This places on the one hand new demands on logistics, an issue that will be specifically dealt with at the expo GasTrans from next year onwards with emphasis on operational technologies and their use for safe handling of liquefied gases on the roads.

On the other hand, it clearly indicates that today’s mineral oil merchants should now begin to get involved in this business segment – whether as logistics providers, pure dealers or as service station operators. At the same time, Klöver points out yet another aspect: digitisation in the energy trade, which is also playing an increasing role in the area of gas: “more and more energy merchants are optimising their trade in liquid gas with respect to operational and merchandise management security. These companies, many of which are medium-sized family-run businesses, have recognised that only highly efficient transshipment and increased data utilisation will ensure long-term profitability of their operations. Digitisation opens up hitherto unimagined possibilities. Go and tell your customer that his stock is running low before he notices it himself and offer to redeliver before he starts searching the internet for the cheapest provider”.

This results in a further major impetus that has led to the establishment of the “expo GasTrans” as a “trade fair inside the trade fair”: a virtually ideal synergy effect that is equally profitable for exhibitors and visitors alike. In short, if the mineral oil trade is on its way to becoming a broad-based energy supplier in order to position its business securely for the future, then in Kassel it will find an ever wider perspective, a very wide variety of different options and the right contacts to make itself fit for its business decisions.

For one thing is certain: e-mobility cannot be the sole means of choice to face the challenges of the change in traffic policy. There will therefore always be alternative gaseous and liquid energy sources that need to be transported.

Holding the two events, expo GasTrans and expo PetroTrans, in parallel at the same trade fair venue allows exhibitors active in both areas to participate economically and appeal to forward-looking customers who already wish to set the course for future business today.

Summary: with the “expo GasTrans”, a B2B platform for the presentation of transport vehicles, equipment features and digital components has been created, which organically further develops and meaningfully complements the “expo PetroTrans” in every respect.