The use of ICT offers several opportunities to improve the lead time of the transportation of cargo, the efficiency of the logistics chain and the safety and the navigation on the waterways. The increase in multimodal transport has led to an increasing need for exchanging traffic and cargo information between the several parties involved in the logistics chain. The exchange of traffic and cargo information is helpful in creating a more efficient logistics chain and improving the safety of inland navigation. ICT offers the opportunity to share this information.
Besides, ICT can be used to give the skipper traffic information, for example about waiting times at locks or bridges, waterway conditions and the most efficient route of navigation. Next to that, the use of ICT can enable skippers to navigate more efficiently, it can be used in advising the skipper to take most efficient route, in order to save fuel and thus to navigate environmental friendlier.
A major challenge for ICT-systems is to link all the information and all the systems together, achieving that all the parties concerned are able to have all the necessary information. Many of these ICT-systems aim to make the cooperation and communication between the parties involved more efficiently. In order to achieve this, it is important that information can be shared, so it is important to either create generally accepted ICT-systems or (at least) to make these systems compatible with each other. Cooperation between different parties to establish such a system is important. This cooperation can be at governmental level, like the development of RIS, but also by the cooperation of private organizations. MIS-Cobiva was established by a cooperation of several container operators, Portbase after a merger of the port community systems of the Port of Amsterdam and the Port of Rotterdam.
RIS: Traffic management systems
River Information Services (RIS) are modern traffic management systems that provide swift electronic data transfer between water and shore. Information will be exchanged between entrepreneurs, captains, waterway authorities and other public institutes. RIS streamlines the information exchange between public and private parties participating in inland waterborne transport. The information is shared on the basis of information and communication standards. The information is used in different applications and systems for traffic or transport processes.
MIS-Cobiva: Management information system for inland container shipping
MIS-Cobiva has been developed by the foundation 'Stichting MIS-Cobiva', established as part of the cooperation between five container operators, Alcotrans, Bulcontrans, Contargo, Danser Containerline and Rhinecontainer. These companies are key players in the handling of container transport between sea shipping and the hinterland, having a market share of forty percent of the container transport on the Rhine. However, the objective of this project is to build a digital infrastructure that can be used by all parties. It is therefore possible for other companies to participate in MIS-Cobiva and in the meantime also other container operators have joined. The adaptation by as many market players as possible would also be one of the key success factors of the implementation of such an information system.
Presentations on this topic at the Rivers of the World Forum: