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Maritime digitalisation should not be empty talk


Embracing the idea of digital transformation is not enough, more action is needed

The indignance towards dismissing the importance of digitalisation is getting comparable to the maddening mentality towards seafarers’ needing improved treatment. The industry is lobbying for digital transformation, but few are willing to take the plunge.

It is not a leap of faith
Governments are advocating digital transformation – with some feeling strongly is imperative to remain relevant. It has sufficient incriminating anecdotes to warrant action; reduced costs and enhanced productivity. Unfortunately, enterprises remain hesitant despite proven case studies underscoring it is not a gamble.

Digitalised maritime is not and should not be likened to mere using machinery to increase output. Instead, it is an effective tool to facilitate smart and efficient operations. Inter-related trends such as e-Commerce, Big Data, Artificial Intelligence (AI), and the Internet of Things (IoT) could lead to large productivity gains for the economy.

However, the persistent view of possible digitalisation-related disruptions to existing business and social models, as well as established markets is false and well-proven. Maritime companies launched similar services within reach online such as chartering, ship chandelling and even bunkering across the globe. The only difference between Marine Online and these companies is offering a full suite versus a fraction of what are commonly needed.

A new norm
Digital transformation is not a new concept. The initial concerns a few years back included paranoia about security breaches, possible human errors during execution and how the global legislations will operate around it. As it is now, things have evolved and it will reach the point of being the only ticket for survival.

Sam Beckett, UK’s former Acting Permanent Secretary at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), once said: “Digitalisation is increasingly important across a whole range of activities and interactions between people, businesses, government and other organisations. To make the best of these changes, we need to be thinking and planning ahead now, so that the right policies and institutions are in place when this transformation really starts to land.”

Marine Online has applied the same principles of evolving business practices with digitalisation. Not only it is the world’s first despite the idea of going digital was heavily debated years back, maritime players are still slow in embracing the idea.


Marine Online News Team
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Global Shipowner Alliance


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