By Martin Masinde
Shipping and maritime has been singled out as a key enabler for a sustainable blue economy.
These are the sentiments of the Principal Secretary Shipping and Maritime affairs Amb. Nancy Karigithu who says, that the region should join forces in sharing the available facilities.
“You are aware that shipping is dynamic and as a region, we share Various aspects in the maritime sector which include: Indian ocean as our maritime passage for international trade, eastern coast of the Indian ocean which connects several states via sea, seaports which serve as maritime getaways to the region and maritime carriers who transport our cargo to and from overseas. Due to these shared facilities, bodies, service providers, aspirations and indeed challenges, there ought to be a framework for collaboration amongst stakeholders.”
She spoke while officially opening the Intergovernmental Standing Committee on Shipping Conference in Nairobi.
She highlighted the importance of collaboration with all players in the sector.
“There is need for shipping and maritime stakeholders to deliberately synergise while playing their critical respective roles in order to support the maritime and shipping supply chain. In this regard the habit of working in silos and taking unilateral decisions on matters that affect the entire industry should be put behind us. For the benefit of everyone, collaboration is the way to go
Ambassador Karigithu pointed out Covid 19 as a major challenge in the sector and it led to the contraction in global maritime trade by 3.8%. another key challenge is the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war not forgetting the same challenge of global warming.
“At the same time the industry has also been hit by disruptive technology that is rapidly changing the way shipping and maritime trade is conducted. This has brought on board smart and mega ships which call for the restructuring of existing port infrastructure, digitalisation and integration of processes and procedures at system level with the emphasize on adopting artificial intelligence and increased automation.”