MOEI UAE signs six partnership agreements for ‘Blue Pass’ project - GulfToday

MOEI UAE signs six partnership agreements for ‘Blue Pass’ project


Suhail Bin Mohammed Al Mazrouei and other officials after the signing ceremony in Dubai.

Sajjad Ahmad, Deputy Business Editor

To enhance sustainability and promote the digital transformation of the maritime sector, the UAE Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure (MOEI UAE) signed agreements with six key industry entities for the “Blue Pass” initiative, making them strategic partners for the success of the platform.

The signing took place during the 2023 edition of Seatrade Maritime Logistics Middle East, the flagship event of the UAE Maritime Week.

The first signing was between the UAE Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure and the Department of Ports and Customs, Ajman.

Engineer Hessa Al Malek, Advisor to the Minister for Maritime Transport Affairs, MOEI UAE, led the next set of signings in the presence of Suhail Bin Mohammed Al Mazrouei, Minister of Energy and Infrastructure; Eng. Hassan Mohammed Juma Al Mansouri, Under-Secretary for Infrastructure and Transport Affairs, MOEI UAE; and the other parties involved. The signatories included esteemed industry players such as Dubai SME, The Marshall Islands Registry, Fujairah Free Zone, Monjasa, Allianz Middle East and Stanford Marine, aiming to support the project and provide various incentives to the platform’s members

Al Mazrouei said, “The transformative ‘Blue Pass’ project aims to establish a digital platform that encompasses all maritime services provided by our strategic partners from ports and leading companies in the maritime sector. This platform will offer multiple incentives and privileges to enhance the competitiveness and attractiveness of the maritime industry. It will attract international vessels and foreign investment for the sector, becoming a cornerstone for building an integrated community of maritime businesses.”

He added, “Through the exchange of privileges and the creation of opportunities for obtaining the best commercial offers, we aim to increase the number of commercial vessels passing through the country. Currently, the UAE handles over 25,000 port calls. Additionally, we aim to attract more foreign direct investment in the maritime sector, raise its contribution to the GDP from the current AED90 billion per annum, and stimulate the environment for conducting maritime business in the country, which already hosts over 27,000 companies.”

Attracting more ships

Sheikh Mohamed Bin Abdullah Al Noaimi, Chairman of Ajman Ports and Customs Department, said, “The maritime sector is a key economic enabler in the Emirate of Ajman. The ‘Blue Pass’ initiative launched by the Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure provides an excellent opportunity to promote this sector and attract more ships that can benefit from our exceptional facilities in the ports of Ajman. Our strategic location in the heart of the northern emirates of the UAE and our connectivity to national and international land routes further enhance our appeal. Undoubtedly, we will greatly benefit from this platform’s digital capabilities, enabling us to contribute to supporting the UAE’s blue economy through our resources.”

Hessa Al Malek said, “We have developed a comprehensive strategy to develop the maritime sector in the country, making it one of the pillars of the Projects of the 50 and the post-oil economy. The ‘Blue Pass’ project is one of the ministry’s most important transformative steps as it revolutionises the way business is conducted in the maritime sector through the power of digital technologies. It enhances communication between companies, provides incentives, and creates an ideal environment in the UAE for maritime businesses. It facilitates the entry of new companies and offers a vast repository of information on maritime services and products.”

‘She of Calibre’ initiative: In support of the “She of Calibre” initiative launched by the Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure (MoEI) last year and in commemoration of the International Day for Women in Maritime, the UAE Maritime Week organised the “Women in Maritime Business Excellence Roundtable.” This event took place on the second day of the Week’s flagship event, Seatrade Maritime Logistics Middle East (SMLME), and featured the participation of highly accomplished female professionals who have played a pivotal role in transforming the maritime sector at local, regional, and global levels.

The roundtable served as a platform to address the need for empowering women in the maritime industry. It focused on strategies and initiatives aimed at increasing female representation across all levels of the workforce. The discussions centered on breaking down barriers, promoting diversity, and advocating for gender parity in a traditionally male-dominated field. Moreover, the event highlighted the valuable contributions women can make to the industry through their unique perspectives and skillsets.

It also shed light on the challenges they face and emphasized the importance of comprehensive policy frameworks to enhance their representation and professional development within the sector.

Nayana Nandkumar, General Manager, Dubai Shipping Agents Association (DSAA), said, “It is imperative for the maritime industry to acknowledge and embrace the significant value that women bring to the table. Female maritime professionals have over the years proven their expertise in navigating ships, managing ports, leading logistics operations, conducting research, and contributing to innovative solutions. Our diverse perspectives and unique experiences add immense value to the sector, fostering creativity, adaptability, and a broader range of ideas. By recognising and embracing the talents of women in maritime, the industry can benefit from a vast pool of untapped potential. It is not only a matter of fairness and equality, but also a strategic need for the sustainable growth and development of the sector.”

While the roundtable supported a key UN Sustainable Development Goal (SDG), SDG 5, which focuses on gender equality, the highlight of the day was the signing of six agreements between the Ministry and esteemed maritime entities across the region for the “Blue Pass” initiative, aimed at building a more connected and digitally advanced industry.

Day two also featured the “Innovation Incubator”, which focused on the need for innovation in the maritime industry in the UAE and across the globe. The session hosted pitches from established and upcoming tech entities that showcased their ground-breaking solutions for the sector. The event highlighted the importance of embracing new technologies to increase operational and cost efficiency.

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