Marseille Implements Automated Port Processes


In a bid to simplify and harmonise administrative procedures for vessels calling at the Port of Marseilles, the Marseille Fos Port Authority has introduced a fully-automated information system, Neptune Port.

Developed at a cost of US$3.4 million, the new system will replace the Escale V2 Nautique which was only partially automated and not entirely paper-free. 

In a previous PTI report, Martin Stopford, Non-Executive President of Clarkson Research and Author of Maritime Economics said that the business model within the shipping industry needs to transform to a ‘Smart Shipping’ model in order to increase the level of automated processes.

Read: Smart Port: A System of Systems Approach

The Neptune port system covers port and logistics processes orientated around the accommodation of ships in the port.

Neptune Port is linked to the private systems of some 600 users in the port community, allowing them to synchronise declarations.

It also provides real time nautical, administrative and logistical data relevant to all calls across the port’s activity range – including container, bulk,  and inland waterways operations – which totalled more than 10,400 calls and 78 million tonnes of cargo in 2015.

As a fully integrated management tool, the system is designed to optimise call durations and enhance coordination throughout the logistics chain.

It is linked to other systems such as the port’s vessel traffic service, the AP+ cargo community system and Maritime Affairs.

The solution also meets a European Union directive enabling electronic declarations under the so-called Guichet Unique Portuaire.

The port authority organised a training support programme to assist rapid take-up and has now implemented a telephone helpline.

A users club will be launched in early 2016 to exchange ideas on future enhancements.

Technical Paper: Automation ‘Standards’: The Search for Perfection

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