Singapore Joins Global Initiative to Create Green Shipping Corridors

Sngapore plans green shipping corridors
(file photo)

Published Apr 4, 2022 5:34 PM by The Maritime Executive

Singapore, which views itself as a global hub for shipping, is accelerating its role in the decarbonization of the global shipping industry seeking to set an example for the industry. Noting the major disruptions to the global supply chain over the past two years and the expectation that emerging trends will reshape the operating environment, Singapore officials outlined a series of initiatives at the opening of Singapore Maritime Week 2022.

“Looking ahead decarbonization is a major challenge for the maritime industry. We must act,” said Singapore Minister of Transport S. Iswaran. “As a global maritime hub, Singapore seeks to contribute to this critical effort,” the minister continued outlining additional steps they plan to undertake with the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore. 

Singapore is already involved in several key studies on decarbonization and launched its Global Centre for Maritime Decarbonization. Minister Iswaran highlighted that Singapore is contributing as a global maritime hub while announcing that Singapore will join the Clydebank Declaration for Green Shipping Corridors.

The city-state will become the 23rd signatory state to the initiative launched at COP26 in Scotland last fall. One of the aims of the Clydebank Declaration is to establish green shipping corridors between ports by deploying zero-emission vessel technologies on voyages, or alternative fuel and charging infrastructure in ports. Singapore expects to participate in a half-dozen green corridors in its position as a global hub between Asia, Europe, North America, and Australia.

“The maritime sector plays a critical role in international trade and the global economy,” said the minister during his opening remarks to the conference. “To ensure its reliability, resilience, and readiness for the future, the maritime industry must transform, and embody the essential elements of continuous innovation, boundaryless collaboration, and strong talent development. This endeavor requires partnership across nations and between the public and private sectors.”

To meet the goals and plan for the future, Minister Iswaran also announced the establishment of a Maritime International Advisory Panel led jointly by the Ministry of Transport and MPA. The goal will be to seek global perspectives on emerging trends and critical developments that will shape the maritime industry. The IAP will be comprised of 12 cross-sector global business leaders.

Singapore’s announcement that it will participate in the formation of green corridors follows the recent news that five Northern European port authorities are joining in partnership with the Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller Center for Zero Carbon Shipping to lay the foundations for a green corridor serving Northern Europe and the Baltic. They hoped that their initiatives would lead to the early commercialization of green technologies and would provide a model for rolling out green corridors in other locations.

Shanghai and Los Angeles announced the first plan for a green corridor. Working with shipping majors Maersk, CMA CGM, and COSCO Shipping Lines, they committed to releasing a plan for the effort by the end of this year. They said they were committed to beginning the transition to zero-carbon fueled ships by 2030 for commercial shipping on one of the busiest ocean shipping routes in the world.