Digitalisation for innovation initiative

Richard Koh Richard Koh, Chief Technology Officer, Microsoft Singapore, discussing digitalisation and innovation at the Singapore Maritime Technology Conference. Credit: Singapore Government

Over the next three years, the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) will focus on digitalisation to help companies innovate and improve productivity.

MPA is working with the Singapore Shipping Association (SSA) to encourage more maritime corporates to join the Circle of Digital InnOvators (CDO) network, which was set up in late 2018 to help drive transformation through the adoption of technology and innovation. The network started with 23 members and has since expanded to 46 members.

Ms Quah Ley Hoon, chief executive of MPA, said: “Innovation and digitalisation are key areas for Maritime Singapore to sharpen our competitive edge. We recognise that some companies need help to kick-start their digitalisation journey.

“With this in mind, we have formed the Circle of Digital InnOvators (CDO) network to champion the adoption of technology and innovation. We will also roll out the Sea Transport Industry Digital Plan to help SMEs in their digitalisation journey. We hope that through such efforts, we can bring the maritime sector to a new level.”

Boosting innovation hub

The main goal for the CDO network is to spearhead digitalisation initiatives in the maritime industry and uplift the innovation hub status of Maritime Singapore. The programme comprises events such as learning journeys and hands-on workshops to upskill this select group of individuals in the areas of corporate innovation.

MPA and partners will also roll out the Sea Transport Industry Digital Plan (IDP) for the ship agency and harbour craft sub-sectors. Aligned to the Sea Transport Industry Transformation Map, the Sea Transport IDP provides small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the Sea Transport industry with an easy-to-use, step-by-step guide on the digital solutions to adopt at each stage of their growth. It simplifies the process for SMEs to go digital so that they can readily access the right digital capabilities to achieve internal efficiencies, reduce cost and improve their services for sustained growth in the digital economy.

The Singapore Maritime Institute (SMI) has also refreshed the ‘Singapore R&D Roadmap 2030: Maritime Transformation’ to optimise R&D efforts and resources for greater value co-creation within the maritime industry. The roadmap has five strategic research areas including ‘Efficient and Intelligent World-Class Next Generation Port’.

By Rebecca Jeffrey

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