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Making a digital mark with smart ports

Smart Ports

The sea port community is experiencing a vast change due to the digital revolution of the Maritime industry. It is gradually adopting new digital technologies to offset the traditional challenges faced by stakeholders of marine companies, ship owners and marine suppliers.

According to a report by Trelleborg, 41 percent of vessel stakeholders do not get their slots and 20 percent encounter delays or more than six hours. With such issues, it is necessary to focus on scaling the digitalisation and automation of the sea port industry. The use of data-driven insights will provide for exact arrival and departure of vessels, increasing the efficiency of global sea ports.

In this time of crisis, the sea port community can turn hopeful and rely on new digital technologies to increase efficiency and productivity. Christian Köhl, Sales Manager at maritime analytics and AIS company, GateHouse Maritime, says that smart ports are the gates to the future of the maritime industry. He added, “The coronavirus pandemic will hopefully speed up the digital transformation of the global sea port community, changing the role of sea ports from passive landlords to a driving force in the on-going digitalisation of the maritime industry.”

With respect to that, the sea port community can start to see new opportunities in business development. As digital initiatives are roped in, port operations can be fully optimised. Digitalisation will also make way for smart ports to become more eco-friendly due to reduced usage of energy resources.

Moreover, Singapore is also in on the smart port initiative. The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) and NUS Enterprise, the entrepreneurial arm of the National University of Singapore (NUS), have launched THE 4TH Smart Port Challenge (SPC) under Port Innovation Ecosystem Reimagined @ BLOCK71 (PIER71).

“Smart Port Challenge comes in timely where start-ups join hands with the shipping companies to curate solutions to future-proof ourselves and build a more resilient maritime community; with the added venture capital funding steering more resources towards this important effort,” said Quah Ley Hoon, chief executive of MPA.

Singapore is also notably optimising vessel travel through digital efforts. Marine Online has partnered with The Republic of Panama to tremendously reduce travelling and waiting time needed to visit the embassy for the authentication of the seafarers’ certificates of competency for safe embarkation.

“By unifying Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Advanced eCommerce Technologies, we aim to digitalise data and elevate procurement efficiency for sustainable growth in the digital economy, for the maritime industry. I am positive that our exclusive partnership with the Consul-General Embassy of Panama, will rejuvenate the maritime shipping space with renewed optimism,” said Mr. Yang Ling, the CEO of Marine Online, an eCommerce company, focusing on delivering essential marine services to ship owners through the integration of digital technology, big data, and Artificial Intelligence.


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