The Singapore Maritime Week (SMW) 2022, organised by the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA), opened on Monday (4 April) with Deputy Prime Minister and Coordinating Minister for Economic Policies, Singapore, Mr Heng Swee Keat delivering the keynote address.
Entitled ‘Riding out storms and seeking new opportunities – The maritime sector in a time of change’ Mr Heng’s speech outlined how Singapore, as a global maritime hub, is responding to global challenges impacting the maritime sector.
Amongst three main topics covered in his speech was the ‘decisive green transition’ to decarbonise shipping.
“We launched the Maritime Singapore Decarbonisation Blueprint last month. It has ambitious goals, which include making our ports net zero and reducing harbour craft emissions significantly by 2050,” he shared.
“The Blueprint was developed after in-depth consultations with industry, and recognises the need to green every segment of the supply chain – from our vessels, to our port and marine bunkering infrastructure.”
Mr Heng, meanwhile, said Singapore is also seeking to contribute towards the international maritime green transition.
“For example, we set up the Global Centre for Maritime Decarbonisation, bringing together industry partners, researchers, and MPA to drive R&D and to pilot novel decarbonisation solutions. The founding of the Centre was made possible through an initial $120 million contribution from government and six like-minded industry partners,” he explained.
“A second example is the Coastal Sustainability Alliance, a partnership to support the electrification of Singapore’s harbour crafts by jointly investing in a network of charging points for electric boats.
“Yet another example is the Clydebank Declaration for Green Shipping Corridors. Minister Iswaran announced earlier that Singapore will be joining this initiative, together with 22 other signatory states.”
Signatories of the Clydebank Declaration are to support the establishment of green shipping corridors – zero-emission maritime routes between two (or more) ports.
“We are only 30 years, or one ship generation, away from the global maritime emissions target set by IMO. With more than 100,000 merchant vessels plying our seas today, many will have to be replaced in the coming decades. Likewise, significant complementary changes on the port-side infrastructure will be needed,” he notes.
As a global financial centre, Singapore has some 20 international banks with ship finance portfolios. Singapore also has a pool of venture capital, private equity and alternative investment players, says Mr Heng.
Moving forward, Singapore is looking to build a green ship financing ecosystem, and develop a suite of financing options to enable the green transition.
“In the coming years, the maritime sector will also need to undergo a fuel transition, from today’s marine fuels to cleaner fuels,” he states.
“Singapore, Japan, and the Port of Rotterdam Authority have also formed the Future Fuel Port Network to develop a roadmap on the adoption of cleaner marine fuels.
“We are also a member of the Castor Initiative, a multinational coalition across the entire maritime ecosystem, that aims to design, build, and commission the world’s first ammonia-fuelled tanker by 2025.
“I welcome all of you to work with us on this journey towards a greener future.”
Related: MPA blueprint prepares marine fuels sector for multi-fuel bunkering transition
Related: Singapore making ‘significant efforts’ to build sustainable maritime hub, says Minister
Related: MPA and partners establish Global Centre for Maritime Decarbonisation
Related: SMW 2021: MPA & Partners ink SGD 120 million fund to establish maritime decarbonisation centre
Related: SIBCON 2020: Singapore enters memorandum of cooperation on future fuels port network
Related: Singapore: MPA and Yara Intl in Ammonia-fuelled tanker Joint Development Project
Photo credit: Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore
Published: 5 April, 2022
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