As part of its ambition to support wide adoption of secure electronic data exchange for ports, the International Association of Ports and Harbors (IAPH) announced the launch of a global questionnaire of the world’s ports to gauge how far processes have been digitalized to track movements of ships, cargo and passengers.
This follows the call to action communiqué initiated by IAPH back in June which includes assessing the state of implementation of the requirements defined in the IMO’s Facilitation (FAL) Convention.
The COVID19 pandemic and the need for safe ship-shore interactions have pushed ports to digitalize. While some IMO member states and ports have achieved some gains, implementing electronic data exchange remains work in progress. Ultimately the aim is to enable and accelerate trade through the world’s ports. This questionnaire aims to assess the status of that work in progress and the challenges being faced by all parties in the process,
…IAPH Managing Director Patrick Verhoeven commented.
Particularly, the questionnaire, which is confidential and open to all ports, consists of eight questions which will provide key insights into where most efforts are needed to provide expertise, capacity building and in some cases technical infrastructure to streamline efficient data exchange between the port community and the ships calling at their ports.
The ultimate aim in adopting harmonized electronic data exchange is to save time and effort on board and ashore through secure, streamlined electronic reporting. By understanding exactly how electronic data exchange is currently being used at ports, a concrete plan can be drawn up on how to support that adoption,
…IAPH Technical Director Antonis Michael added.
IAPH will only publish overall results, as well as on a regional scale. Then, consolidated feedback will be shared, in the first instance, with the ports who have responded.
We can then also identify the main challenges, and take these to work alongside colleagues at IMO, the World Bank, UNCTAD and other institutions to see what levels of assistance and support ports need to digitalize, especially in emerging and developing counties,
…concluded Mr. Michael.
The news coincides with the first ever virtual realization of the IMO’s FAL Committee 44, from September 28 to October 2, which considered draft Guidelines for authentication, integrity and confidentiality of content for the purpose of exchange via maritime single window, prepared by the ISO.