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SMW 2022: Minister chairs Maritime International Advisory Panel meetings

Maritime IAP noted need to balance between viable bunker fuel solutions in near term, while retaining flexibility to respond to technological advances.




Maritime International Advisory Panel Members

The Maritime International Advisory Panel (IAP), chaired by Minister for Transport and Minister-in-charge of Trade Relations Mr S Iswaran, held its inaugural meeting on 5 and 6 April during the Singapore Maritime Week 2022.

The Maritime IAP was set up by the Ministry of Transport (MOT) and the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) and comprises global business leaders from the maritime sector and adjacent industries.

It aims to seek global perspectives on key trends that will shape the maritime industry, and how the maritime sector and adjacent industries can collaborate to enhance the connectivity and resilience of the global maritime industry and supply chains.

Members who attended the IAP were:

Members who attended the IAP were

Over the two days, the Maritime IAP held insightful discussions with Singapore’s Deputy Prime Minister and Coordinating Minister for Economic Policies, Mr Heng Swee Keat, and Mr S Iswaran on the future of the global economy, trade and supply chains.

They also visited the Port of Singapore and had a deeper discussion with Mr S Iswaran on the critical factors as well as the stakeholder collaborations needed to build connected, resilient and sustainable supply chains.

Global Trends

The Maritime IAP highlighted three key trends that would shape the future of a resilient and sustainable supply chain:

  1. Reconfiguration of supply chains through diversification, regionalisation and disintermediation, due to growing emphasis by countries and companies on the need to enhance resilience and flexibility amidst the COVID-19 pandemic and geopolitical developments;
  2. Technological advancements, such as digitalisation and automation, which would improve productivity and end-to-end visibility of supply chains; and
  3. Growing importance of sustainability as countries, corporations and consumers demand a decisive response to climate change.

Enabling More Connected, Resilient and Sustainable Supply Chains

Shipping is a critical conduit for global trade. In response to the three trends, the Maritime IAP emphasised the important leadership role of maritime hubs around the world, including Maritime Singapore, in enabling more connected, resilient and sustainable supply chains.

The Maritime IAP underscored the need for inclusive collaboration among governments, the maritime industry, and adjacent sectors across the global supply chain to accelerate solutioning and scale up efforts; thereby complementing and reinforcing the efforts undertaken by the International Maritime Organization (IMO).

The Maritime IAP identified the building of digital corridors and green corridors as two areas for collaboration.

Digital Corridors

Companies and countries are increasingly seeking end-to-end visibility across supply chains to enable better management, responsiveness, and optimisation of complex supply chains. The emergence of technologies such as Internet of Things technologies, digital twins, blockchains and predictive analytics can drive accurate and timely data flows to enable better integration of supply chains and more agile responses to disruptions.

The Maritime IAP stressed the importance of advancing digital solutions to strengthen supply chain resilience. In particular, the panel recommended the following areas for collaboration with the aim of improving visibility across supply chains:

  1. Data sharing particularly of non-commercially sensitive data can be facilitated via common platforms.
  2. Data standardisation and interoperability can be enhanced to facilitate access to reliable and real-time data.
  3. Data security can be strengthened to safeguard the use of data across the supply chains from the potential risk of increasing cyberattacks.

By focusing on these areas, digital corridors among the industry, adjacent sectors and governments can be developed to enable trusted, secure and seamless information flow across global supply chains.

Green Corridors

The Maritime IAP noted that there was urgency to tackle carbon emissions in shipping. On the shipside investments required, the Maritime IAP recommended further engagement with shipyards and engine makers to explore modular development of vessels that would provide flexibility.

Given that significant investments will be required to build infrastructure to support future fuels bunkering, the Maritime IAP noted the need to balance between narrowing down and catering for a few viable fuel solutions in the nearer term, and retaining flexibility to respond to technological advances in this area.

The Maritime IAP noted the global shipping industry’s proposal to the IMO to establish a fund to accelerate decarbonisation financed through mandatory financial contributions for marine fuel oil consumed.

This would provide funds to accelerate research and development (R&D) in low- and zero-carbon fuel solutions and incentivise the transition to greener shipping while supporting capacity-building for developing countries’ climate action.

The Maritime IAP discussed that Singapore, as a major transhipment hub and bunkering port, could play a role in developing and piloting such a funding mechanism. The pilot would complement the work of the IMO.

The Maritime IAP viewed the availability of green financing for shipping as important to support decarbonisation. To encourage the development of green financing, the Maritime IAP suggested a finance ecosystem to bring together players with the funds and match available projects based on their risk levels. To enable better assessment of the risks, specialised players from the legal and accounting services sector can be involved to plug the knowledge gap.

The Maritime IAP suggested that coalitions of the willing can shape the future of decarbonisation by establishing green corridors. Such green corridors would serve as pilots to demonstrate how key ecosystems, including regulatory sandboxes for new fuels, green financing, information sharing, and carbon accounting mechanisms, can be brought together to provide practical ways to decarbonise the maritime industry.

The Maritime IAP agreed that the development of such initiatives should complement the work done at the IMO and be inclusive to ensure that the maritime sector could make the green transition together. Bold action at the multilateral, regional and bilateral fronts amongst stakeholders such as maritime and port authorities, industry players, and research institutions was necessary to accelerate decarbonisation efforts.

The Maritime IAP viewed that Maritime Singapore is well placed to foster such collaborations across ecosystems, sectors and borders by leveraging Singapore’s position as a hub of hubs for maritime, aviation, trading, finance, talent, and innovation.

Critical Role Played by Seafarers

The Maritime IAP underscored the critical role seafarers played in keeping global supply chains flowing and delivering essential goods to the world. The Maritime IAP expressed the hope that countries around the world continue to support seafarers out at sea.

Mr S Iswaran said, “We thank the IAP members for their valuable insights on how we can collaborate to bolster the connectivity, resilience and sustainability of global supply chains. As a trusted global maritime hub, Maritime Singapore will continue to drive collaborations with like-minded partners so as to create a digital and green future of maritime together.”

Minister for Transport and Minister in charge of Trade Relations Mr S Iswaran chairing the inaugural Maritime IAP Meeting

The above development is part of the Singapore Maritime Week which is happening from 4 to 8 April 2022; other developments which have taken place during this event are:

Related: SMW 2022: MPA inks collaborations to accelerate maritime decarbonisation
RelatedSMW 2022: 20 maritime leaders attend inaugural MPA Academy programme
RelatedSMW 2022: Minister highlights ‘decisive green transition’ in keynote address
RelatedSMW 2022: Singapore Sea Transport Industry Transformation Map launched
RelatedSMW 2022: Singapore to establish green shipping corridors for zero-emission maritime routes
RelatedSMW 2022: Event officially opens with ‘Transformation for Growth’ theme
RelatedSMW 2022: MOT and MPA establish Maritime International Advisory Panel
RelatedSingapore Maritime Week 2022 returns with ‘Transformation for Growth’ theme


Photo credit: Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore
Published: 8 April, 2022

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Marine Fuels 360: Methanol presents easiest path towards maritime decarbonisation, says DNV

Captain Singh was confident the bunkering infrastructure in Singapore will be ready to welcome methanol-fuelled vessels due to the coordinated efforts between various agencies.





Capt Satinder

The use of methanol as a bunker fuel presents the least path of resistance towards maritime decarbonisation, believes the Principal Consultant, Head, Research and Development, Maritime Advisory, SE Asia, Pacific, and India at classification society DNV.

Captain Satinder Singh Virdi was speaking amongst panellists in the Methanol Panel session at Marine Fuels 360 on Tuesday (28 November) when he offered an opinion about reasons behind the increasing awareness of methanol as a marine fuel.

“The ease of adopting methanol is perhaps one of the reasons. The product exists as a liquid at ambient temperature and has been carried on vessels for the last 80 years, so it is not something new,” he stated.

“What is new is we're going to use methanol as a bunker fuel. Ease of adoption, ESG compliance, as well as getting closer to decarbonisation goals are the drivers for shipowners adopting methanol.”

According to Captain Singh, the trend for methanol-fuelled newbuildings have continued in October where DNV’s Alternative Fuels Insight (AFI) platform recorded 230 vessels on order where 156 comprises of containerships.

“The trend started when Maersk increased their newbuild order of methanol-fuelled vessels; before that it was mostly LNG as an alternate fuel,” he said.

Captain Singh was confident the bunkering infrastructure in Singapore will be ready to welcome methanol-fuelled vessels due to the coordinated efforts between the Singapore Shipping Association, Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore, Global Centre for Maritime Decarbonisation, and other organisations.

“We are all working together to support Singapore’s future maritime operations. Singapore is an international maritime centre, and we want to establish ourselves as the leading maritime city,” he explained.

“I would call this a cohesive action by all relevant partners, such as shipowners, charterers, classification societies, ship managers, bunker testing firms, mass flow meter manufacturers, bunkering companies, and more.

“It is important for Singapore to be seen as a fair supporter of bunkering in terms of reliability and reputation, and if things go wrong actions are taken very strictly to ensure transparency and quality. So, in that way I am satisfied to say that ‘yes’ we have what it takes to make methanol bunkering happen.”

Related: DNV: Methanol-fuelled order trend continues, with first ammonia DF newbuilding contracts recorded in Oct
Related: Maersk invests USD 700.3 million for additional four methanol-fuelled container newbuilds

Other related: Singapore: Equatorial Marine Fuel builds four “new generation” methanol-ready bunker tankers
Other related: MPA: Due diligence carried out prior to recent Singapore methanol bunkering pilot
Other related: VPS completes quantity survey on Singapore’s first methanol bunkering op
Other related: The Methanol Institute: Singapore takes first-mover advantage in Asia with methanol bunkering pilot
Other related: Singapore bunkering sector enters milestone with first methanol marine refuelling op
Other related: Singapore gets ready for its first methanol bunkering this week after one year preparation
Other related: The Methanol Institute: Singapore takes first-mover advantage in Asia with methanol bunkering pilot

Photo credit: Informa
Published: 6 November 2023

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Höegh Autoliners, Sumitomo to collaborate on ammonia bunker fuel supply for PCTCs in Singapore, Jacksonville

Duo will embark on a comprehensive evaluation of the compatibility between Höegh Autoliners PCTC newbuilds and ammonia bunkering facilities at the identified bunker ports.





Höegh Autoliners, Sumitomo to collaborate on ammonia bunker fuel supply for PCTCs in Singapore, Jacksonville

Norway-based pure Car and Truck Carriers (PCTCs) vessel owner and operator Höegh Autoliners on Tuesday (5 December) said it has agreed with Sumitomo Corporation to look into the supply of clean ammonia as a bunker fuel at the ports of Singapore and Jacksonville, USA from 2027 onwards.

The two companies have formalised their commitment through a Letter of Intent to collaborate on the supply and delivery of clean ammonia as a next-generation sustainable maritime fuel for Höegh Autoliners’ upcoming Aurora Class PCTC vessels. 

The twelve vessels are set to become the largest and most eco-friendly car carriers ever built and they will have the capability to run on zero-carbon ammonia or carbon neutral methanol. 

“The Letter of Intent symbolises a remarkable step in the realisation and development of the production and consumption of clean maritime fuels. The collaboration hopes to stimulate the upscaling of the supply and demand of clean ammonia for maritime usage,” Höegh Autoliners said in a statement. 

Both companies view clean ammonia as a promising future fuel for the maritime industry, offering substantial potential in addressing the challenges associated with greenhouse gas emissions in global shipping. 

To support this vision, both entities have launched a range of initiatives throughout the ammonia value chain, with a primary focus on making clean ammonia a viable choice for maritime fuel and thereby achieving significant reductions in emissions from the global shipping sector.

Moving forward, the companies will embark on a comprehensive evaluation of the compatibility between the PCTC vessels and the ammonia bunkering facilities at the identified bunker ports. 

They endeavour to make necessary adjustments to specifications for both “shore-to-ship” and “ship-to-ship” bunkering operations and undertake safety assessments to establish standardised operational protocols and regulations in close coordination with pertinent government agencies.

Photo credit: Höegh Autoliners
Published: 6 December, 2023

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Alternative Fuels

CENIT and Hinicio to explore feasibility of zero-carbon bunkers in Colombia

Mission is to explore the feasibility of producing, storing, supplying, and exporting zero-carbon bunker fuels at strategic port locations in Colombia, says centre.





Luis Desiro on Unsplash

The Centre for Innovation in Transport (CENIT) on Tuesday (5 December) said it was teaming up with Hinicio, a strategy consulting firm focused on sustainable energy and mobility, for a project funded by The World Bank in Colombia.

CENIT said their mission was to explore the feasibility of producing, storing, supplying, and exporting zero-carbon bunker fuels at strategic port locations in Colombia.

“The shipping industry is poised to become a major demand centre for zero-carbon fuels, particularly green hydrogen-based options like green ammonia and green methanol,” CENIT said in a social media post. 

“And it will play a pivotal role in transporting these zero-carbon fuels from emerging production hubs in Latin America to high-demand centres in Europe and East Asia.”

“This project takes us a step closer to decarbonising ports and fostering a sustainable future for maritime transportation.”

Photo credit: Luis Desiro on Unsplash
Published: 6 December, 2023

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