Port of Rotterdam Part 3: Digital Trends 2019


Speaking exclusively to PTI, the Port of Rotterdam has forecasted which new technologies and innovative ideas will make an impact in 2019.

In the second instalment of a three-part interview, which began by outlining Rotterdam’s digital port vision, Director of Digital Business Solutions Joyce Bliek has emphasized the vast number of emerging trends that will compete for superiority during the next year.

Two key developments for Rotterdam are artificial intelligence (AI) and blockchain, both of which will be increasingly implemented across the port in 2019.

Paul Smits discusses how Rotterdam and IBM are building the port of the future in a recent Port Technology technical paper

In January, the port revealed its investment in AI as part of the Pronto platform, which leverages a computer’s “predictive capacity” to calculate when vessels approaching the port will arrive at the berth.

Investment has also been made in blockchain technology, Rotterdam launching a pilot project with collaborating partners Samsung SDS and Dutch bank ABN AMRO to achieve the paperless integration of physical, administrative and financial streams involved in global logistics chains.

With the groundwork of completing pilot projects and establishing start-ups now complete, Bliek has asserted the potential 2019 holds for real progress at the Port of Rotterdam.



The biggest trend for the next year though, as Bliek notes, is the more efficient sharing of data and information, a key challenge within the industry that could hold the key to future success.

With the support of new data streams, and cooperation between major ports, advanced tools like AI will become more powerful, allowing Rotterdam and its competitors to upgrade their operations for a wide variety of benefits.  

While it is important to remember that there will be successes and failures when trying to implement new trends, it is clear that the digitalization of ports is “here to stay”.

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