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international ship owners and operators. The total tonnage of ships under the Singapore  ag reached 90.9 million GT in 2018.
Leveraging on Technology to Sharpen Competitive Edge Advancement in technology is disrupting industries upending traditional business models. Digitalisation – the process of converting information from a physical format into a digital one – is changing the way ships are designed and built as well as the way they are operated and managed. Additive manufacturing, also known as 3D printing, allows rapid prototyping of parts for new installations as well as re ts reducing costs and production lead-time.
Speaking at the Singapore Maritime Technology Conference in April 2018, Dr Lam Pin Min, Senior Minister of State for Health and Transport, said: “With the rise of digitalisation, the landscape is changing very rapidly. The entry of non-traditional players like Amazon and IBM, and start-ups like VesselBot, is beginning
to disrupt the status quo. The industry’s rules of engagement are also changing due to new technologies such as blockchain, arti cial intelligence and autonomous technology. Increased digitalisation also brings new cyber risks that can disrupt shipping and its role as a reliable carriage of world trade.”
To ensure Singapore remains relevant, the government is leading the drive to leverage technology to sharpen its competitive edge. At the port, a commercial 3D printing production facility is being built. Jointly developed by the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA), National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Cluster (NAMIC), PSA and manufacturing  rm 3D Metalforge, it will be the world’s  rst commercial 3D printing production facility to make spare parts for port equipment. Strategically located at the Pasir Panjang Terminal, where the PSA is testing port technologies for current and future terminals, it will use a specialised maritime digital cloud supported by blockchain technology for more secure  le transfers.
This move towards digitised inventories reduces the need to hold excess inventory, which lowers storage costs, while shortening turnaround time from weeks to days due to improved availability of spare parts.
NAMIC, a national programme initiative led by NTUitive, the innovation and enterprise company of Nanyang Technological University, is also collaborating with the Singapore Shipping Association (SSA) on an additive manufacturing (AM) Joint Industry Programme (JIP) for marine parts. The JIP is focused on establishing the commercial viability, technical feasibility and regulatory compliance behind the use of AM for marine parts, to strengthen Singapore’s role as a hub for ship supplies.
The Bill of Lading (BL) is also coming under scrutiny. It is possibly the most important and widely used document in the shipping industry and a prime candidate for change. It contains legal and commercial information providing evidence for the contract of carriage, receipt and ownership of goods for a cargo shipment

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