Singapore, UAE join forces on digitalisation, decarbonisation in maritime industry

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Singapore is ready to collaborate with the UAE in efforts to digitalise and decarbonise the maritime industry, the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) told Emirates News Agency (WAM) on Thursday (2 June). 

“Singapore and the UAE enjoy very strong bilateral relations; we are both (maritime) hubs in different regions of the world and it is our role to ensure that whatever ships that cross in Singapore and the UAE, we are able to handle the different types of challenges, moving forward,” said MPA Chief Executive Ms Quah Ley Hoon. 

“Therefore, we are really looking forward to collaborating with the UAE in digitalisation and decarbonisation,” she added in an interview with WAM on the sidelines of 7th Edition of Ports Authorities Roundtable (PAR 2022) in Abu Dhabi.

She said digitalisation is one of the three key areas that will help the maritime industry face some important challenges, Ley Hoon noted. 

Through digitalisation, “we ensure that different parties are able to connect with one another, not just on port clearance but also on cargo clearance, allowing the goods to flow in a more seamless manner,” she explained.

The second one, she said, is the effort of decarbonisation. 

“It is important that the maritime industry further reduces emissions and works towards the IMO (International Maritime Organisation) goals of 2050. We need to look at what’s the future ship, what’s the type of ship that we can cater for in future,” said Quah. 

She also said the industry should be able to handle new bunker fuels such as ammonia, hydrogen, and biofuel, which would help the decarbonisation efforts.

The third key area is handling the disruption as it happened during the global pandemic. 

The industry has to come together to ensure that goods continue to flow uninterrupted in the event of a public health issue or a similar challenge, said Quah.

Quah said all the key challenges facing the industry are being discussed at the Ports Authorities Roundtable (PAR 2022), a major annual maritime event that brings together port authorities from around the world to strengthen consensus and cooperation in the industry.

“We look forward to a successful conclusion of the roundtable. It is really important for us to come up with ideas, especially in the areas of decarbonisation and digitalisation. There are a lot of question marks now when it comes to global trade, global shipping and global maritime, and I hope that through this roundtable we are able to move forward,” she said. 

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Photo credit: Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore
Published: 6 June, 2022