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IMO 2020: Set to Shake-Up the Shipping Industry

Each year, billions of tonnes of goods traverse oceans on ships the size of warehouses. With the spread of globalisation, the volume of goods traded by sea has grown by 300 percent since the 1970s, according to the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD). Today, ships carry more than 80 percent of all goods.

While the global maritime industry is an invisible force for most of us, former UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon once called it the “backbone of global trade and the global economy”. And it is only getting bigger: UNCTAD predicted in 2017 that seaborne trade volumes would increase by around 3.2 percent each year until 2022.

The shipping industry is vital to modern life, but it is also responsible for emitting around a billion tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) a year. As part of the International Maritime Organisation’s (IMO) broader plan to clean up the industry in the coming decades, ships will be required to reduce their sulphur emissions by more than 80 percent from 2020. Changing the rules for a sector that guzzled half of the world’s total demand for fuel oil in 2017 will have a significant knock-on effect for the entire oil value chain, impacting everyone from truckers and airlines to ordinary consumers…

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Shipping innovation is moving faster than regulation

Innovation in the field of autonomous shipping is moving at a far greater pace than the international rules that will regulate the industry can be established, according to Rolls-Royce.

Kevin Daffey, director ship intelligence, engineering and technology at Rolls-Royce Commercial Marine, told the Maritime Autonomous Ships Regulatory Working Group conference that Scandinavian countries are moving ahead with the development of autonomous ships that will prove the technology in local waters, and will operate under local regulations…

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Five technologies to transform maritime in 2019

Shipping is just beginning to reap some of the benefits in operational efficiency improvements, emissions and expenditure reductions, safer navigation and regulatory compliance that digitalisation has to offer.

Digital momentum is building within the industry along with a push to achieve greater levels of autonomy, full adoption of artificial intelligence, crewless ships, blockchain-controlled logistics and integrated ship-port operations.

With these dynamic forces set to shape the business of shipping for decades to come, Maritime Digitalisation & Communications has used our own analytics to predict the five biggest trends for the year ahead…

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Maritime VSAT market set for huge three-year growth

Maritime VSAT revenues are set to grow by more than 13.7% to 2021 according to a new report. Technavio’s analysts forecast the global market will grow at a compounded annual growth rate of 13.74% during that period.

They highlighted that VSAT market growth was driven by multiple industry trends including an increasing need for VSAT on fishing vessels and ships involved in maritime surveillance.

Technavio also identified improving maritime domain awareness, anti-piracy and commodity tracking as key drivers for installing more maritime VSAT services. Crew welfare requirements and ship monitoring are also drivers…

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What is Maritime and VSAT? Here’s all you need to know.

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Telemedicine should be mandatory on ships

Investing in telemedicine reduces the cost of medical emergencies and improves crew welfare, says Martyn Wingrove.

Telemedicine is not mandatory as part of the Maritime Labour Convention (MLC) for seafarers’ rights. But it should be.

If there is an issue with the ship, crew members have to diagnose and then either repair it or wait for technical assistance. In an onboard medical emergency, it is the same, but their lives are at stake…

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Take a look at some of the pros and cons to telemedicine.

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Technology pushes cruise ship connectivity to record levels

Satellite and VSAT antenna technology is helping cruise ship operators to ramp up throughput to meet passenger and crew demands for onboard internet connectivity

Developments in high throughput satellites and VSAT hardware are increasing broadband communications capacity for passengers on cruise ships. Guests and crew can use onboard wifi to connect their mobile devices to the internet for social media and other online services over a new generation of satellites…

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