The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with five international partners , to develop and adopt common data standards and Application Programming Interface (API) specifications, which will facilitate data exchange for port and maritime services transactions. These partners are CargoSmart (solution provider for the Global Shipping Business Network), GTD Solutions (representing TradeLens), GeTS and PSA International (jointly representing CALISTA), and the Port of Rotterdam Authority. The signing was witnessed by MPA’s Chairman, Mr Niam Chiang Meng and the International Maritime Organization (IMO)’s Secretary-General, Mr Kitack Lim.
The MoU to drive interoperability is timely as port authorities have developed or are developing maritime single windows to implement IMO’s Convention on Facilitation of International Maritime Traffic to facilitate the electronic exchange of information for port clearance. This collaboration will also support MPA’s digitalOCEANSTM initiative, where individual data platforms of port authorities, port operators, shipping lines, logistics companies and platform providers can exchange data and interoperate through a common set of APIs. MPA and its partners will also hold a series of technical workshops to design, test and publish the API specifications.
Mr Niam said, “The maritime sector is a global business. Different players in the maritime ecosystem are pursuing digitalisation at varying paces. To truly reap the benefits of effective information exchange, we need to move beyond digitising single nodes in the maritime supply chain. MPA and our partners have taken the first step with this MoU. We hope that more will join us in linking up ships, port authorities and platform providers into a seamless digitalOCEANSTM to facilitate port-to-ship connectivity and efficient trade transactions across the globe.”
The MoU was signed at the Maritime Perspectives Series Prologue: Digital Connectivity & Data Standards, the first webinar organised by MPA under the Maritime Perspectives series. The series, comprising four webinars to be conducted from 28 July to 8 October 2020, will bring together experts and industry leaders to share insights on digitalisation, decarbonisation and trade in the new normal post COVID-19. Mr Lim delivered the keynote speech at the webinar to an audience of more than 250 from the port, shipping and technology sectors.
Mr Niam said, “COVID-19 has exposed vulnerabilities in global supply chains on a scale never seen before. As the backbone of global trade, the maritime sector has to evolve to meet the challenges of a new normal economy. Digitalisation, decarbonisation and adaptation to new global trade order are issues that have to be addressed by the industry. We hope the Maritime Perspectives series will be a useful platform to gather insights on these issues, exchange ideas and pave the way for collaborative solutions.”