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    Plotting Poland’s Stagnation, Paving Prosperity: Germany’s Game-Changing Port Strategy Revealed

    Amid protests against the expansion of the terminal in Świnoujście and the economic utilization of the Oder River by Poles, Germany has just released an extensive report unveiling its new National Port Strategy. Federal Minister of Transport, Volker Wissing, sees this as a pivotal step towards fortifying German ports as a cornerstone of the economy. has delved into the report, which outlines nearly 140 specific measures aimed at tackling the most pressing challenges facing German ports – from digitization to development space, skilled workers, and resources.

    The report focuses on the strategic development of German maritime and inland ports, titled “Nationale Hafenstrategie.” Its objective is to ensure the competitiveness, safety, and efficiency of German ports while contributing to the country’s ecological and energy goals. The strategy encompasses five main objectives: (1) enhancing the competitiveness of German ports in the international market, (2) developing ports as sustainable energy hubs, (3) promoting digitization and innovation in the port sector, (4) ensuring legal and transparent trade of goods, and (5) improving the efficiency and flexibility of port infrastructure. The report also details specific actions and measures necessary to achieve these goals.

    Boosting the competitiveness of German ports in the international market will involve a range of actions, such as improving port infrastructure, promoting port services, and strengthening cooperation between ports. Innovative technologies, such as energy storage systems and renewable energy generation, will aid in achieving the second objective of developing ports as sustainable energy hubs, along with promoting the use of alternative fuels in maritime transport.

    The third objective of the strategy, as mentioned, is to promote digitization and innovation in the port sector. This entails the introduction of new technologies such as automation systems and digital logistics platforms, as well as fostering collaboration between technology companies and ports. To ensure legal and transparent trade of goods, various solutions are proposed, including goods monitoring systems and support for customs officials, as well as promoting collaboration between law enforcement agencies and ports.

    The fifth and final goal of the strategy is to improve the efficiency and flexibility of port infrastructure. This includes actions such as enhancing port infrastructure, particularly the modernization and expansion of container terminals and other handling facilities to accommodate larger vessels and increase throughput. Optimizing logistics processes through the introduction of modern technologies like automation systems, digitization, and integrated supply chain management is also part of the plan.

    Improving communication and collaboration among all entities involved in the cargo handling process, including terminal operators, shipping companies, carriers, and public authorities, is also emphasized. Furthermore, developing the hinterland of ports by improving transport and logistics infrastructure in the vicinity of ports to ensure smooth and rapid connections with the economic hinterland is crucial.

    Increasing the share of rail and inland waterway transport in the transportation of goods to and from ports is proposed to reduce environmental impact and logistics costs. Supporting innovation and scientific research in port logistics to enhance competitiveness and innovation in the sector is also highlighted.

    Enhancing education and training for sector workers to improve service quality and logistical efficiency is another aspect emphasized in the report. It underscores that the implementation of the strategy requires cooperation and engagement from all entities involved in the port sector, including the government, local authorities, businesses, and workers. The strategy is also aligned with the country’s energy and ecological objectives, such as reducing greenhouse gas emissions and increasing the share of renewable sources in energy production.


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