What types of solutions are most in demand from shipping companies?
Crew connectivity and performance solutions are now in the hype. And you see a lot of interest, especially when collecting data for the performance monitoring, which those data are being used for analytics, forecasting, trends, intelligence. So I guess those two crew connectivity and for performance optimization of ships is what is now the trend.
Where does communication and connectivity fit into the maritime industry?
Let's say that the maritime industry now belongs to an ecosystem, where you have logistics companies, you have the cargo people, all the stakeholders related to a port call let's say which is the ecosystem. So having them all be more digitalized, because they are on land, the demand, the push for connectivity on board ships has been increased.
Now, also, we have all green shipping and the regulations around [that] so they're all pushing in that direction. So that's what we see from our side.
How has Covid impacted the training of seafarers?
First, we have the COVID years right, which proved that we need to give crew better communication for their well-being and the mental health as well. Then we have seen that okay, training is possible now, on board ships, we have seen that there is no need for the crew to come onshore spend their holiday times going into different academies to do their courses. So, yes, we have seen that many new platforms have emerged the last couple of years in terms of training, and is now the number one importance for each shipping company to implement going forward in their strategies.
How does vessel tracking contribute to understanding global shipping movements and markets?
We are we are very highly involved in ship tracking as we use it for performance and weather routing optimization, but also intelligence. So, you have the AAS, which is a terrestrial VHF networks that collect information; it is mandatory for ships to have an AI system. And that went beyond the last years… we have seen companies utilizing emissions to track ships, satellite imaging, and that gave a lot of push into analytics, intelligence, trends for cargo and also for fisheries. What you need to be careful with though is where your data goes, when it comes to storing those data, right, and how companies are merging or being acquired. So, when you are having contracts with various companies that have your data, you just need to be cautious.
How important is an event like Saudi Maritime Congress for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia?
It's very important. To be honest, I had a presentation earlier and I thanked the government here and the kingdom for their 2030 vision, which we are very aligned with and committed to support here, in the Kingdom locally and abroad. Having such key events helps transfer the message across, bring more companies to get to know the kingdom and the region here and the market here, which I think we all need to pay attention to. So, I think it's very, very important and it was a fantastic event and looking forward to the next one.