17 March 2020

CLECAT elects Willem van der Schalk as new President

Today, 17 March 2020, the General Assembly of CLECAT unanimously elected Mr Willem van der Schalk (DSLV) as its new President, replacing Steve Parker (BIFA), who had been at the helm of CLECAT since December 2015.

As CEO of Hamburg based Freight forwarding company a.hartrodt, Mr van der Schalk has gained wide experience in the freight forwarding business for many years. Mr van der Schalk is also well experienced in the management of associations on many levels as former Vice-President of the German Federal Association for Freight Forwarding and Logistics DSLV.  Mr van der Schalk is also President of the Hamburg Freight Forwarder's Association.

The General Assembly of CLECAT thanked outgoing President Mr Parker for his contributions to the sector.

Following a discussion on the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak, Mr van der Schalk said: ‘Many challenges still lie ahead of us to keep international trade moving. We are pleased to see the recognition of Commission President von der Leyen, noting that the free circulation of goods is crucial to maintain availability of goods. Control measures should not cause serious disruption of supply chains, essential services of general interest and of national economies and the EU economy.’  He added: ‘The current crisis demonstrates again the importance of logistics for the European economy and society as a whole.  I hope I can support the sector through these difficult waters.’

In expressing his goals and expectations for the coming years, Mr van der Schalk noted: ‘I truly believe in the strength of Europe and the Single European Market. The future of the European logistics industry is largely determined by rules and regulations on the internal market and on the EU's trade relation with third countries around the world. Therefore, an industry as important for the smooth functioning of the global economy as logistics, needs a strong voice in Brussels.’