Processes on ships and at ports should become more efficient and more environmentally friendly. In order to reach this shared goal through the digital exchange of standardised data, representatives of the maritime industry gathered to discuss further action on Tuesday, 17 July 2018. The host of the meeting, which included over 30 participants from Europe, was the Hamburg Vessel Coordination Center (HVCC), a joint venture of the Hamburger Hafen und Logistik AG (HHLA) and EUROGATE Container Terminal Hamburg GmbH (CTH).
The networking of the participants from European ports and the maritime industry should be strengthened as part of a European incentive scheme. All partners should profit from this digital cooperation. In order to achieve this, the results of various predecessor projects coordinated by the Swedish Maritime Authority under the name “Sea Traffic Management” (STM) will also be taken into consideration. As part of STM, standards for the exchange of information between ships and ports were defined and the corresponding technical specifications were developed.
The HVCC now intends to apply the experience it has gathered over many years to the practical application and digital usage of the developed standards. “The exchange of standardised information between terminals, shipping companies, authorities and other parties involved in the process for the common good is exactly how we work at HVCC,” explained Gerald Hirt, Managing Director of HVCC. He points out that collaborative decision-making, i.e. the joint decision-making process and data usage, has stood the test of time, and that this approach offers far-reaching advantages for the whole industry.
During the meeting at the offices of HHLA subsidiary Hamburg Port Consulting (HPC), yet more partners embraced this cooperative approach. Furthermore, the goals that the partners are striving to reach through these different projects were defined and a road map for the drafting of an EU grant application in the autumn was outlined.
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Reliable ship arrivals, more efficient ship handling and port logistics, as well as reduced fuel consumption and emissions – these are the aims of a joint digitalisation project between HVCC Hamburg Vessel Coordination Center, the maritime technology company Wärtsilä and the cruise group Carnival.
The Port of Hamburg is not only the largest seaport in Germany – it is also the second-largest inland port. Around 10,000 inland waterway vessels call each year the handling facilities of the Elbe metropolis. The Hamburg Vessel Coordination Center (HVCC) is now developing a digital platform specifically for inland waterway vessels that will allow ship calls to be coordinated centrally in the future.
Hamburg Vessel Coordination Center (HVCC) and tug shipping company Kotug Smit Towage will in future work closely together at the Port of Hamburg in order to coordinate preliminary planning for ship calls and departures, and the associated tug services. This step will further optimise the efficiency and quality of ship handling in the Port of Hamburg.