BIMCO Advocates For IMO Digitalization Strategy

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  • BIMCO has submitted a paper to the International Maritime Organization (IMO) advocating for the development of a comprehensive strategy on maritime digitalisation.
  • The IMO Committee on Facilitation will discuss the paper at meetings on 8-12 April with the aim to exploit the potential of digitalisation, including efficiency, safety, and sustainability in ship design, ship operation and port call activities.
  • The paper has been submitted in conjunction with China, Liberia, Republic of Korea, Singapore, the United Arab Emirates and the ISO (International Standardisation Organisation).

BIMCO has submitted a paper to the International Maritime Organization (IMO) advocating for a comprehensive digitalization strategy.

The BIMCO paper, supported by China, Liberia, Republic of Korea, Singapore, the United Arab Emirates, and the ISO (International Standardization Organization), aims to leverage digitalization for improved efficiency, safety, and sustainability in ship design, operation, and port activities.

IMO digitalisation strategy

Digitalization is key for the maritime industry’s efforts to decarbonize, with potential benefits in operational efficiency, resilience, and innovation. Effective implementation, however, requires coordination among stakeholders and initiatives, noted BIMCO.

According to a BIMCO survey, 40% of the shipping industry is unaware of the IMO resolution mandating a “maritime single window” for data exchange from January 1, 2024, and only 36% of port calls offer fully electronic data exchange.

Technical challenges also exist, like the inconsistent application of the e-navigation route exchange format (RTZ) due to a lack of initial coordination, limiting its full potential, the organization explains. Similar risks are expected for other digitalization initiatives such as the regulatory framework for autonomous ships (MASS), Maritime Single Window (MSW), and digital signatures.

An overarching IMO digitalization strategy could offer significant benefits by promoting electronic reporting formats, enhancing data harmonization, and ensuring system interoperability. This would streamline digital processes, facilitate efficient information exchange between ships and ports, reduce operational costs, and stimulate innovative ship design and operation, BIMCO explains.

As BIMCO informs, such a strategy would signal the IMO’s priorities and the importance of digitalization to the industry and external stakeholders, promoting collaboration, wider adoption of standards, and effective digital solution implementation, thereby advancing efficiency, safety, and sustainability in the maritime industry.

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Source: BIMCO