NAPA welcomes expansion of Blue Visby as Development Bank of Japan joins consortium


Maritime software and data services provider NAPA has welcomed the addition of the Development Bank of Japan (DBJ) to the Blue Visby Consortium. Blue Visby is a cross-industry project aimed at reducing shipping’s greenhouse gas emissions by tackling the “sail fast, then wait” practice – which sees ships sailing at speed across oceans (increasing their emissions exponentially) only to wait at anchorage for extended periods.

The inclusion of the first financial institution in the consortium is an important milestone for Blue Visby, which combines an innovative contractual framework and state-of-the-art transparent digital technology to optimize arrival times for groups of vessels travelling to the same port, enabling them to reduce their speed and emissions without losing a competitive advantage. DBJ will support the development of this system by providing financing know-how and advice.

The Blue Visby platform, which is underpinned by NAPA’s digital expertise, is progressing at pace on the technical side towards its implementation on the world’s fleets. In August 2023, Marubeni and Blue Visby verified an average of 15% CO2 reduction on 68 gas and chemical tankers on 625 voyages and signed a letter of intent for proceeding to a real-life prototype.

Meanwhile, the number of members of the Blue Visby Consortium has more than doubled since the project was formally launched in July 2022, from 13 members originally to 31 today. Co-ordinated by NAPA and law firm Stephenson Harwood, the project spans key stakeholders in the maritime industry, including BIMCO, Baltic Exchange, UK Hydrographic Office, shipowners MOL and Marubeni, grain exporter CBH, insurer Thomas Miller, the Port of Newcastle, Port Authority of New South Wales, classification societies ClassNK and Bureau Veritas, as well as environmental organizations and academia.

Pekka Pakkanen, Executive Vice President for Shipping Solutions at NAPA, said: “We are extremely proud to see that Blue Visby has expanded its reach significantly in the past few months. The addition of a first bank is a major milestone for the Consortium, demonstrating the financial credibility of the project, and we look forward to the next steps, which will include more prototypes to bring this innovative solution to more shipping segments.

“The success of Blue Visby shows in tangible terms what shipping can achieve when different stakeholders in shipping proactively agree to collaborate and share some of the risks and benefits of the decarbonization transition. It also shows the central role of digital technology in bringing those innovative frameworks to life. By tackling ‘sail fast then wait’, one of the biggest inefficiencies that still stands in the way of decarbonization progress, we can make a significant difference on our industry’s carbon footprint today, reducing GHG emissions from voyages by around 15%.”