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The International Maritime Organization (IMO) and Germany have signed an agreement on the development of a project proposal to help reduce maritime transport emissions in East and Southeast Asian countries.

As part of an agreement signed with the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety of Germany (BMU) earlier this month, IMO will partner with the Partnerships in Environmental Management for the Seas of East Asia (PEMSEA) to undertake the preparatory project and to develop the full project proposal.

The project is supported through the International Climate Initiative (IKI) of BMU.

IMO will partner with the Partnerships in Environmental Management for the Seas of East Asia (PEMSEA) to undertake the preparatory project and to develop the full project proposal.

In a statement sent to Bunkerspot today (29 April), IMO said that the agreement with the German authorities is the first step in an Asia Maritime Transport Emissions project (known as the Blue Solutions Project) that aims to support East and Southeast Asian countries in identifying opportunities to prevent and reduce transport emissions.

The full-size project, once approved, will target reduction of GHG and other pollutant emissions from ships within ports, and from hinterland transport through energy efficiency improvements, optimised processes and ‘innovative technologies’.

Jose Matheickal, Chief of the Department of Partnerships and Projects, IMO, commented: ‘Partnerships are essential in tackling the global issue of emissions which are harmful to the environment. By identifying opportunities to reduce maritime transport emissions and demonstrating potential technological solutions in partnerships with various stakeholders in the region, this project will help developing countries in Asia to move closer towards a low-carbon future. We thank Germany for this very timely support and look forward to working with the partner countries and potential other partners from public and private sector to develop and design a full-size project proposal which we hope to submit to Germany for approval by end of this year.’

The agreement confirms the allocation of €385,697 in funds to develop a full-size project proposal. This will involve a number of information gathering and project design activities to align the aims of the project with those of regional and national stakeholders. These include planning workshops; conferences; interviews; identification of candidate demonstration projects, partnership discussions and desktop research and assessment.

In addition to undertaking a comprehensive technical, financial and economic analysis of the proposed project, the project proposal will also identify capacity development and knowledge management aspects, as well as assessment of GHG emission baselines. Opportunities for pilot demonstration projects to advocate for potential of low carbon shipping, ports and hinterland transport will also be identified.

IMO added that, at the preparatory stage, it will work with the following focus partner countries to develop the full-size project proposal: China, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam. Meanwhile, efforts may also be undertaken to identify capacity building needs in other Asian countries. 

Japan, the Republic of Korea and Singapore are expected to be invited to serve as knowledge partner countries and their level of involvement in the project will be identified and confirmed during the appraisal stage.

The full-size Asia Maritime Transport Emissions Project is slated to receive funding of some €15 million.  

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