KEY figures from Hampshire’s logistics industry will gather to discuss future opportunities at a conference next month.

The future of Hampshire and Dorset’s logistics industries will be at the forefront at the Grant Thornton and Barclays’ Transport and Logistics Business Leaders Forum on May 8.

It will be held at Hotel TerraVina at Woodlands in the New Forest and will give experts a chance to discuss the opportunities and challenges on the horizon.

The event comes after the opening of the new £100 million SCT5 terminal at the Port of Southampton, which will ensure the city continues to berth some of the world’s biggest container ships.

The UK Logistics Confidence Index report also shows a surge in confidence during the second half of 2013 compared to the previous six months.

Attendees include John Eynon, managing director of Southampton-based Import Services, who says local feeling reflects the positive national picture within the logistics industry.

He said: “We are feeling confident about what is to come.

“Over the last 12 months we have won a number of new clients and our existing clients are doing well.

“That has given us confidence for the future and we’re now looking at how we can grow and make the most of the upturn.

“Evidence of this in action is the work we are doing to extend our dockside facilities at the Port of Southampton.

“This is due to complete in July and will increase our pallet capacity from 40,000 to 53,000.

“The opening of the new SCT5 container terminal also gives us confidence in our city.

“Thanks to this investment, Southampton is set to build on its reputation as the UK’s port-centric logistics hub, feeding both domestic and continental European markets.”