The Asia Navigation Conference 2021 held in Tianjin

Focus on safety, green and intelligent cooperation to build an Asia Navigation Academic Community

The Asia Navigation Conference 2021 (ANC 2021) was held in Tianjin from October 19th to 20th with the theme of “safety, green, intelligence and cooperation”. He Jianzhong, president of the China Institute of Navigation (CIN), pointed that ANC has always advocated the regional cooperation and common development. And it will join its hands with the Asian maritime community to build an academic community that convinces people with reason, a community of values that convinces people with virtue, and a community of destiny that puts people first, so as to make due contributions to the prosperity of Asian and development of navigation in Asia and even the world.

ANC was jointly initiated and organized by CIN, Japan Institute of Navigation (JIN), and Korean Institute of Navigation and Port Research (KINPR). It has been successfully held for 18 consecutive sessions and promoted the cultivation of Asian maritime talents and witnessed the development of Asian maritime science and technology through the academic exchange platform. The annual conference was hosted by CIN in rotation, and was held in the form of online and offline, with the offline venue located in Tianjin Water Transport Engineering Research Institute of the Ministry of Transport. Li Guoping, safety director of Ministry of Transport of the People’s Republic of China, executive deputy director of China Maritime Search and Rescue Center, and director of Emergency Office of the Ministry of Transport, and Sun Wenkui, deputy mayor of Tianjin Municipal Government attended the conference and delivered speeches. Zhang Baochen, executive deputy president of CIN, presided over the opening ceremony. JIN, KINPR and representatives from Singapore, Myanmar and Indonesia attended the conference online. The conference brought together the experts from China, Japan, Korea and International Shipping Federation (IAF) to make academic reports upon the topics of testing and demonstration cooperation of MASS, maritime search and rescue services and regional cooperation, special research on marine environment, and the application of virtual reality technology in maritime education and training, etc. In addition, the conference also organized paper exchange activities and selected award-winning papers through expert evaluation.

Strengthen collaborative action, open cooperation and science and technology innovation

President He Jianzhong said in his speech that the sea is a natural link for economic, trade, cultural, scientific and technological exchanges among countries. The scientific research in the field of navigation is international in nature, which requires people in the maritime community from all countries to strengthen communication and mutual trust, reach multi-faceted and multi-angle cooperation and consensus, and work together for the global development of maritime science and technology. To this end, he put forward three points of understanding.

First, collaborative action is an inevitable requirement to promote green development in the maritime field.

The Chinese maritime community is working hard to reduce carbon emissions from various aspects such as ship equipment, fuel supply, shore power construction and alternative energy sources. We hope to focus on the theme of green development to discuss in depth the technology of emission reduction from the source, to innovate and adjust the measures that can better reflect the comparative advantages of water transportation in terms of transportation mode, to promote clean, low-carbon and efficient development in terms of energy consumption structure through the platform of ANC.

Second, open cooperation is an important guarantee for the sound development of the maritime industry.

There is a greater need to further strengthen the international cooperation and work together for a stable and orderly logistics supply chains and shipping service guarantee system in response to the current complex and changeable pandemic as well as prominent contradictions arising from the global trade demand and logistics supply chains. CIN has been committed to strengthening the communication and contact with the maritime academic groups of various countries in the world, and actively building an international exchange and cooperation platform in the field of maritime. Firstly, we will carry out extensive international academic exchanges through the “China Navigation Day Forum”; secondly, through the journal China Navigation and Navigation Technology, we invite maritime scientists from all over the world to discuss the theoretical and practical experience of navigation; thirdly, relying on the China Navigation Think Tank, we will welcome the participation of Asian maritime academics in the formation of the Asian Maritime Think Tank Alliance; fourthly, we will work to prepare for an international port and shipping science and technology alliance and build a navigation science and technology innovation platform for industry, university and research institute so as to study and deal with the common problems faced by the global maritime field. At the same time, CIN will initiate a World Conference on Maritime Science and Technology next year, and warmly invite experts and scholars from the maritime community in Asia and the world to participate.

Third, scientific and technological innovation is the inexhaustible driving force for the maritime industry to keep pace with the times.

At present, the traditional globalization is adjusting to retraction while the digital globalization is accelerating. We should seize the opportunities to guide and promote the deep integration and development of new technologies such as big data, Internet of Things, artificial intelligence, block chain and supercomputing with the traditional shipping industry. In this condition, we will work to organize and speed up the scientific and technological innovation around the key points of transformation and development of the shipping industry, operation mode, supply chain efficiency of the transportation chain and port facilitation. We look forward to achieving new consensus in exploring the establishment of a China-Japan-Korea smart shipping demonstration zone.

Advocate the application of advanced science and technology to promote shipping safety

Li Guoping pointed out in his speech that this conference is of great significance to the sound and sustainable development of the navigation. Safety and green have always been the focus of attention in the field of navigation, which is in line with the slogan “Safer Navigation and Cleaner Ocean” put forward by the IMO. Intelligence is the emerging direction of the development of navigation science and technology in recent years. With the widespread application of intelligent technology, its application is gradually being practiced and expanded in ship construction, maritime communications, ship driving, electromechanical control, cargo handling, etc. Collaboration reflects the international and regional characteristics of the  conference, as Asian countries have frequent trade contacts and similar development goals. Only by cooperation, mutual exchanges and concerted efforts can we make due contributions to the economic prosperity and social stability in Asia.

Li Guoping introduced that China’s Ministry of Transport has been actively advocating the use of advanced science and technology to promote the shipping safety, reduce accidents and disasters, and improve service quality. Recently, the concept of all-factor and large traffic management has been emphasized to build a new pattern of “multi-dimensional perception, efficient coordination, intelligent disposal and quality service”. He expressed that he is very willing to share this construction process with the industry counterparts in Asian countries, and will continue to support the cooperation between CIN and the maritime science and technology community in Asia and the world. In addition, we are able to pool and integrate maritime science and technology talent resources at home and abroad, actively develop international and domestic navigational academic exchange activities, build a shared platform for the exchange and implementation of navigation scientific and technological achievements, and always lead the direction of navigation science and technology development.

Strive to build a world-class smart and green port       
As Sun Wenkui said in his speech, Tianjin is an important port city in northern China, and Tianjin Port, as the “sea gateway” of Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei, is an important open platform for Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei to connect with the world. General Secretary Xi Jinping pointed out that we must strive to build a world-class smart and green port to better serve the coordinated development of Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei and the joint construction of the “Belt and Road Initiative” (BRI) during his inspection of Tianjin Port. The Tianjin Municipal Party Committee and the Tianjin Municipal Government have thoroughly implemented the spirit of the important instructions made by General Secretary Xi Jinping, and have given full play to the important role of marine transportation in the national economic and social development. We have been accelerating the construction of Tianjin's northern international shipping hub, have been making every effort to build a world-class smart and green port with reasonable layout, perfect system, efficient service and integrated development of port and city, and we have been striving to protect the implementation of major national strategies, and promoting the high-quality development of the regional economy. In addition, we have been promoting the formation of a new pattern of comprehensive opening. Sun Wenkui said that he would look forward to strengthening exchanges and cooperation with everyone, constantly promoting the in-depth and extensive application of navigation technology, and jointly making positive contributions to the construction of a strong transportation country and a strong maritime country.
(Reporters: Li Siying and Liu Yihang)