IMO-Singapore project to implement digital ship clearance system in the Port of Lobito, Angola, with the aim to support more ports in future.
amely, the IMO and Singapore have selected the Port of Lobito, in Angola, for a pilot project to establish an efficient digitalized system for electronic exchange of information in ports for ship clearance.
The Single Window for Facilitation of Trade (SWiFT) Project was launched in March 2021 with a call for expressions of interest to participate.
The project will begin its pilot phase with the Port of Lobito, before being scaled up to benefit more countries in the next phase.
The SWiFT Project will establish a system for the pilot port to allow electronic submission, through one single portal, of all information required by various Government agencies when a ship calls at a port. This concept is known as the Maritime Single Window (MSW) system.
Under the pilot project, the selected country will be advised on the necessary legal, policy and institutional requirements for the MSW system. The port will then be provided with functional MSW software, hardware and/or IT services, configured to the country’s needs. Training will also be provided, as well as advice on policy reforms required to successfully implement an MSW.
Increased digitalization supports greater efficiency which benefits the ship, the port and wider supply chain. We want to support countries that may be having difficulties in implementing the FAL Convention requirements for electronic data exchange, by supporting a pilot project which will show the way and result in know-how which can then be shared with others
said Julian Abril, Head of IMO’s Facilitation Section.
After the initial pilot and subject to funding availability, the aim is to replicate the pilot project in other IMO Member States in need of similar technical assistance.
Following implementation in the pilot port, the IMO-Singapore project endeavours to springboard countries in their digitalization journey and unlock the full potential of their maritime sectors. It is only when most, if not all, ports undergo digital transformation, that the full benefits of digitalization can be realized by the maritime community
The IMO-Singapore SWiFT Project builds upon earlier successful project that delivered a maritime single window system in Antigua and Barbuda with in-kind and financial support provided by Norway.
Beyond supporting Angola, the pilot will serve as a model for IMO to match donors with Member States for future partnerships for and beyond the domain of digitalization, to encourage further efforts to make IMO’s digitalization agenda an inclusive one
said Tan Suan Jow, Dean of the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) Academy.
The implementation of specific activities of the Pilot Project will commence by 15 November 2021.