The day brought together representatives from across the industry, including customers from the region, local partners and marine hardware manufacturers. We were also joined by guest speaker Dr Parry Oei, Chief Hydrographer of the Maritime Port Authority of Singapore.
The day was part of a series of events which explore the strategic and operational issues raised by the fundamental shift in maritime navigation from paper charts to digital technology. Each event is designed to help fleet managers, marine superintendents and mariners to develop a comprehensive plan and schedule for the transition from paper to digital navigation.
The Singapore event, like the first in Hamburg, provided a lively discussion forum as well as the opportunity to gain feedback from the attendees via interactive voting sessions.
In Hamburg, delegates at the first conference underlined just how challenging a commercial environment the shipping industry is today. Over 80% of them felt that it is harder than ever to make a profit in shipping while satisfying the demands of environmental and safety regulations. The business challenges are exacerbated by the difficulty in retaining crew and staff, which was identified as being the most significant threat to business today.
However, attendees also felt that digital navigation would help directly address both of these issues. In fact, the majority are adopting digital navigation because it will deliver real business efficiencies and support their retention of skilled crew in a challenging business environment. Furthermore, most attendees (65%) felt they were on schedule to meet their relevant deadlines to comply with the IMO’s mandatory introduction of ECDIS.
In Singapore, over half of delegates said they already had plans in place for the adoption of ECDIS, and more than half agreed that it would increase the efficiency of their crew. Unlike in Hamburg, a quarter of delegates in Singapore still considered ENC coverage to be an issue. But with AVCS now providing global, 100% official data with coverage of over 2,165 ports, it would be surprising if as many felt the same in a year’s time.
There were many other interesting conversations over the course of the two days and for further insight we have a podcast from the Hamburg event which is available here. You can also find details of the topics covered on the Future of Navigation blog.