Panelists of WISTA International Trade Committee Webinar


Gina Panayiotou

Featured among the “Top Maritime Influencers you should follow” by Marine Traffic and committed to “branding” the industry that makes the world go round, Gina Panayiotou is an analytically-minded strategist, ranked by Legal 500, GC Powerlist Greece, and Cyprus as one of the Top 100 in-house counsel driving innovation within their sector. Based in London, Gina Panayiotou, is a maritime lawyer and sustainability communications consultant, with an MBA specializing in leadership and change management. She is the founder and CEO of Oceans Arena, a consultancy practice offering bespoke legal, communications, and brand strategy to startups, NGOs, SMEs, and corporates, especially with respect to ESG planning. She is also the Concept Founder of “Ocean Arena Stage” (previously “It’s ALL about Shipping”), a freelance maritime writer and passionate change agent of the industry, being very active in stakeholder engagement and youth empowerment, having served various expert committees in this respect. Gina is the G100 Network Brand Creation & Marketing, UK Country Chair, a Board member of YoungShip UAE, leading the association’s brand strategy, the Secretary of WISTA UK, and represents the UK on the WISTA Trade International Committee. Her expertise ranges from maritime transactional law & policy, with a focus on sustainability strategies, ESG compliance, contracts, commercial, corporate & ship finance law, as well as business development, market penetration strategies, key messaging & brand concept formulation.


Amanda Hastings


An English-qualified solicitor specializing in Maritime Law and International Trade, Amanda joined Western Bulk’s Singapore office in September 2019 as Legal Counsel. Prior to moving to Singapore, Amanda worked for the UK P&I Club and HFW, working predominantly within the German market.



Alison Cusack

Alison Cusack is the Founder and Principal Lawyer of Cusack & Co Pty Ltd, an innovative and forward-thinking maritime law firm. Alison’s modern approach to business is fresh-minded, progressive, and inclusive. In addition to her female-founded firm, Alison has championed WISTA Australia, the Women in Shipping and Transport Association, as president for the last 3 years.  Alison’s passion for learning and growth also continues to flourish as a Master’s Lecturer in Business and Company Law.



Lenore Oosthuizen

Lenore is a Senior Director in the FTI Business Transformation Services and part of the Global Trade and Excise Team, specializing in the development of tailored solutions for companies involved in activities governed by Customs and Excise legislation locally and within Africa. Lenore is an admitted Attorney of the High Court of South Africa with more than 10 years of consulting experience at the Big 4 consulting firms, providing technical opinions and guidance on tariff classification, customs valuation, and international trade agreements. She has been involved in the development of customs and excise control frameworks, landed cost modeling, and dispute resolution. Lenore has extensive experience in customs tariff structure analysis and tariff amendment applications. She has made submissions to local and regional authorities on the implementation of Harmonized System Nomenclature (HS 2022) and the transposition and reclassification of goods. She has also obtained tariff classifications rulings for novel products from more than 30 African jurisdictions, as part of various market access projects. She has extensive experience in the analysis of legal frameworks governing the movement and manufacturing of goods in various jurisdictions. In this area, she has been involved in Pan African landed cost modeling projects aimed at assisting multinationals to develop guidelines for primary consideration when expanding into new customs and excise environments and benefitting from preferential duty treatment offered under trade agreements and duty saving mechanisms. Lenore has also assisted clients with trade and excise advocacy and submissions to fiscal and regulatory authorities. She further assists clients in preparation for Revenue Authority Modernization initiatives such as preferred Trader Programmes. Lenore has conducted various due diligence reviews on all stakeholders within international supply chains including manufacturers, exporters, importers freight forwarders, clearing agents, and various intermediaries. She also assisted clients in the development of risk control frameworks to manage trade compliance from source to the general ledger. Lenore has also been involved in various trade compliance reviews (including international trade customs and excise compliance and anti-trade-based money laundering sessions) and the development of a related trade control framework. Lenore has assisted global companies trading in tobacco, spirits, wine, sugar-sweetened beverages, and petroleum products to manage trade compliance with the provisions of excise legislation and the principles underlying excise duty collection e.g., the duty at source (“DAS”) regime. Currently, Lenore is part of the FTI team, which focuses on exchange control violations, customs and excise compliance, trade-based money laundering investigations in South Africa, and has conducted training workshops relating to Illicit Financial Flows (“IFF”) from a trade based perspective.


Jessica Barrera

Jessica is Nicaraguan, living in Mexico for 6 years. She holds an MBA from Universidad Centroamérica -UCA- de Nicaragua and a diploma in Digital Marketing from the University of California Berkeley Extension. Jessica has been in the A.P. Moller Group for 9 years where she has developed her career as a leader in the logistic industry. Her latest role -Head of Digital Platforms for Mexico and Central America- has boosted her skills to connect the logistic industry with digitalization.



Filip Koscielecki

Filip qualified as a solicitor at HFW, a global shipping law firm in London. He joined Thomas Miller in December 2015, handling a variety of Defence and P&I cases. He is knowledgeable about the trends and digital technologies that are transforming shipping and insurances industries. In 2018 he joined the IG’s Electronic Bills of Lading Working Group focusing on approvals of eBL systems for P&I cover purposes. He regularly comments on the use of Blockchain in trade and shipping, Autonomous Vessels and other transformative technologies, their legal ramifications, barriers and impacts.



Tiuna de Benito Fernadez

Tiuna De Benito holds a bachelor’s degree in Law, obtaining the degree of “LAWYER”, at the University Santa María, Caracas-Venezuela. His specialization in international transportation: Mention Maritime Commerce UNITAR-Geneva, Switzerland, and specialization in Information Technologies: Program ASYCUDA UNCTAD-DTL, UNITAR- Geneva, Switzerland. Expert in Aviation and Space Law: Ibero-American Institute of Aeronautics and Space Law. Twenty-eight years of progressive experience in the tax-customs, foreign trade and international transportation areas. Management, legal analysis, and elaboration of projects in the public and private sectors and international organizations, as an expert in customs and foreign trade legislation, as well as in the elaboration of procedures, organization and methods reengineering. Legal and technical advice on Customs, Foreign Trade and International Transportation. His Current Position is Regional Manager UNCTAD-DTL Program ASYCUDA-DTL, LATAM. Regional Center Coordination Support ASYCUDA for the Americas: Technical Support El Salvador, Nicaragua, Bolivia, Argentina, Paraguay, Puerto Rico, Colombia, and Venezuela. Regional Center Advisor ASYCUDA World for Asia-Pacific, en Kuala Lumpur- Malaysia for the project for the implementation of ASYCUDA World and new procedures for customs modernization projects in Dacca, Bangladesh y Colombo, Sri Lanka. Regional Center Advisor ASYCUDA World for East Africa, for the program Port Community Integración Aduana-Puerto. Director of the Ibero-American Foreign Trade Observatory (OICEX) Madrid-Spain. Director of the Federation of Trade Points para Madrid-Spain and Caracas-Venezuela. Academic Director of the Foreign Trade Center (CECOMEX), Panama City- Panama and Santo Domingo Dominican Republic. Professor of Integrated Logistics at the Universities: Interamerican of Puerto Rico, en las sedes de San Juan – Puerto Rico y Miami – Florida. USA. The University of Mayagüez in Commercial Engineering, Sailing Skipper, Private Pilot.




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WISTA has 3,800+ members and 56 National WISTA Associations (NWAs).

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