An Important Player in Globalisation
The maritime industry consists of a number of sectors such as equipment manufacturing, ship building and ship repair, among others. The industry contributes heavily to globalisation: 90% of all consumer goods have at some point been transported by ship.
The shipping industry also accounts for around 3% of global greenhouse gas emissions. In recent years, the industry has taken greater interest in environmental issues, which has led to a number of developments in the maritime market.
The global shipbuilding market is expected to exceed 149 billion euros by 2025, a year-on-year growth rate of 5.6%. As a point of reference, this is more than half of Finland’s GDP (€229B) in 2019.
Because of its importance, the entire maritime market has experienced a lot of interest and advances in recent years.
Most investment in the maritime market is made in industrial engineering. Although the investment volume was still relatively small at the time of the study (see graphs below), there has been a significant growth in interest in advanced technologies since. This includes things like AI, IoT and robotics.
A Steady Growth Rate in Investment
Since 2010, a total of €6.8B has been invested in maritime companies in the EU and North America combined. The market really started to gain traction in 2013. Since then the amount of investment has grown at a steady rate.
In 2018, however, a spike in the number of investments occured, while the total volume of investment that year dipped almost 30 percent. Investment volume returned to its previous level in 2019, totaling more than 1 billion euros.
Up until recently, the average size of an investment remained the same. However, 2019 is the first year to see a decrease in the number of investments along with an increase in the total amount invested
As discussed earlier, most of the investments in the maritime market were made in the sphere of industrial engineering. As can be seen from the graph below, investments in this field cover 95% of all the investments in the market.
The remainder of the investments mainly fall into the following three categories; technology, media and telecom (TMT); manufacturing; and robotics & drones.
The 6.2 billion euros (see below) invested in industrial engineering is primarily shared among water treatment, electonics & machines, communication services and maintenance services.
The Most Heavily-Invested Elements in The Market
For the maritime market to be able to sustain its current position on the world stage, it is vital that it takes care of the one element that lets it function: water. Incidentially, the same is true for any industry.
Water treatment can be any process that improves the quality of water, making it suitable for the desired end use.
In most cases, this involves deactivating existing microorganisms present in the water. This could be done using chlorine or through processes such as ozonation and ultraviolet radiation.
Electronics & Machines
The electronics used in the maritime industry could be anything from radar to energy systems. Because they are used in the maritime environment, it is essential that they are water-resistant.
In the future, the market will see further advances in technology.
Business Finland expects Finnish companies to shape the digitalisation of the maritime industry. This will direct the market to more environmentally-friendly and smarter solutions.
Communication costs are a big problem in the maritime industry.
It was not until recently (the 1970s) that a system of ship-to-ship or ship-to-shore communication was established which did not require the services of a radio officer. Today communication at sea is carried out via geostationary satellites when the ship is out of range of shore stations. However, communication at sea remains a challenge.
It is for this reason that investments have been made in maritime communications. Technological advances and innovations could help the maritime industry operate more efficiently, as they have done for many other industries.
Maintenance of maritime equipment requires planning and thoroughness. Challenging environments and expensive equipment further complicate the process.
These services could for example include shipyards and a range of repair and installation solutions. Repairs could be anything from IT maintenance to cable installation.
By having control of your equipment’s lifecycle you will save money. Preventive maintenance is a good way to gain that control. It is also good to choose the right service provider, as there are many out there.
Innovations in The Industry
Finland is often seen as a groundbreaker in tech and innovation, and this is also true with the maritime industry.
Watch Business Finland’s video about innovations in the industry:
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