Ports & Terminals

HPC To Survey Information Systems For European Inland Ports And Terminals

HPC Hamburg Port Consulting, a leading logistics consultancy for ports, maritime and inland terminals as well as intermodal rail transport, has been commissioned by the German Directorate-General for Waterways and Shipping (GDWS) to conduct a study on information services for ports and terminals. The analysis is being carried out as part of a European project aimed at developing a digitalization strategy for freight transport on continental Europe’s inland waterways. 

 As the central federal authority of the Federal Waterways and Shipping Administration, the GDWS is participating in the “Digitalization of Inland Waterways” (DIWA) project, which is funded by the European Union’s Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) program and involves four other national inland waterway authorities: the Netherlands, Belgium, France and Austria. The project aims to develop a common, integrated strategy for the digitalization of the inland waterways of the TEN-T corridors, making the transport mode more competitive and sustainable in the long term.

“We at GDWS are pleased that, together with our European project partners, we will be able to help shape the future of European inland waterway transport and to contribute to this environmentally friendly mode yielding an even better performance,” said Thomas Wagner, head of department for Inland Transport Engineering, and Tobias Aretz, national DIWA coordinator (both GDWS).

As part of the business process developing a framework for the DIWA master plan, HPC has been commissioned to explore the information services for ports and terminals. The focus will be on building an inventory of the data interfaces between inland navigation operators and European ports, as well as the IT system landscape. The aim is to determine the existing level of digital maturity and future potential with regard to the digitalization of the processes engaging ports and inland navigation.

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“Against the background of the heavy utilization of road and railway systems, the integration of inland navigation into the overall development of intermodal transport concepts is very welcome,” said Hartmut Beyer, authorized signatory at HPC. “The digital transformation of the inland waterways network will significantly increase the attractiveness of the mode for customers. At HPC, we are very pleased to be able to input into the strategic development of this important trans-European project with our combined port and IT know-how.”

HPC has many years of experience in this sector and has advised national and international inland ports on operational issues, analyses and digitalization projects.

For example, HPC supports the Hamburg Vessel Coordination Center HVCC in optimization and coordination of maneuvering when feeder vessels and larger ships meet in restricted parts of the Elbe or in port. In addition, HPC has successfully implemented digitalization and inland navigation projects for operators on the Rhine, in India and the United States.

HPC is an active member of the Inland Vessel Working Group of Hamburg Hafen Marketing. The working group aims to strengthen the role of inland navigation in the Port of Hamburg.