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REGIOSTARS Awards 2023 - APPLICATION FORM: Submission #310
  • Welcome page
    A connected Europe
  • Basic information
    Efficient flow of goods and passengers between Finland and Sweden
    EfficientFlow made real time port information available for all the actors involved when a ship arrives to a port. Having the information at everyone’s fingertips, resulted in easier planning, more efficient use of resources, lower emissions and cost savings. The solution is available to anyone in the world since it is based on open-source code. Starting with two ports in the project, the solution is now used operationally in more than 25 ports in the region.

    Where was your project implemented?

    Baltic Sea Region / Central Baltic
    Östra Promenaden 7
    601 78
    • Country: Sweden
      Region: Gävleborgs län
      City: Gävle
      Address: Depåvägen 20
      Postal code: 806 47
      Geocode: No
      Latitude: 60.670124
      Longitude: 17.152752
    • Country: Finland
      Region: Satakunta
      City: Rauma
      Address: Hakunintie 19
      Postal code: 26100
      Geocode: No
      Latitude: 61.1285438
      Longitude: 21.4521931
    European Regional Development Fund

    Under which operational programme was the project carried out?

    Central Baltic programme

    Please enter your project ID on the Kohesio platform in the space provided below


    When was your project implemented


    Please provide the details of your project's funding


    Please provide the contact details for the project promoter (the organisation implementing the project)

    Swedish Maritime Administration
    Project Manager
    Östra Promenaden 7
    +46 73 622 90 44

    Please provide the contact details for the managing authority

    Regional Council of Southwest Finland
    Head of Managing Authority
    Linnankatu 52B
    +358 40 7420302
  • Description of the project
    EfficientFlow had the goal to establish an open source platform for information sharing among all actors in port calls: Ships, pilots, tug operators, port authorities, agents, terminals, linesmen, and also other actors involved in maritime transport chain like rail, road and pipeline operators on shore.
    The project made the specification for an information sharing system with a desktop option, an App for Smartphones and integration to relevant existing systems (pilots and terminals). The requirements and the review of the interfaces were developed in close contact with the end-users.
    Just gathering all end-users in each port in the same room was an added value. This is nothing that happens regularly in ports and the strengthened relationship between the actors helped establishing the needed trust for information sharing.
    Based on the requirement the project went to public procurement for the two ports, Gävle in Sweden and Rauma in Finland. The winning company then worked very closely with the port and the ports’ end-users in the development phase. In order to get quick feedback from reality, early versions with little but critical information were released, and the user feedback made the final version in the project very useful and user-friendly.

    The project also had a second part focusing on route sharing between ships in order to avoid ships meeting in (too) narrow places in the Finnish and Swedish archipelagos. That solution is interesting in a longer perspective since International Maritime Organisation in May 2023 decided to make route sharing capacity in future electronic navigation systems on-board mandatory from 2029. The decision was on route sharing ship-to-shore, excluding the ship-to-ship possibility, which is why the shore based solution demonstrated in EfficientFlow becomes a role model for future implementations. However, this application to Regiostars focuses on the EfficientFlow of goods in ports.
    Local impact: The reduced waiting time between active work for all actors in the ports has led to more efficient use of resources, both manpower and machinery. There is less emissions since machines are used less time, and lorries spend less time idling (sometimes with engines on). The work force has a less stressful work day, since they have a better overview of flow in the port call: e.g. when ships are planned to arrive, when the terminals are planning to finish the loading of the ship.
    Regional impact: The project and the common software has led to a tighter relationship between ports, which are sharing best practices and ask each other for advice in a much more frequent manner than before.
    Baltic Sea Regional impact: Future project can use the result and even base solutions on the open source platform. The project has been successfully disseminated both by the project itself, but also by the Interreg Central Baltic as one of their success stories.
    In the maritime world, knowing more than anyone else used to be a key for business success. In todays connected world, sharing information has become a key for mutual business success.
    EfficientFlow is maybe the first project in the world who has implemented standardised real-time information sharing among port actors. The solution is based on sharing start and end times of the interaction of each involved actor. It does not share any business sensitive information on how each actor provides its services. By involving the end-users early on in the process the project established common trust that is necessary to get full honesty in the real life situation.
    It has not been done before due to the traditional business culture.
    The Port of Gävle has in parallel changed the port regulation and in a follow up project established probably the first slot-time system for an energy terminal in a public port in the world. The slot system leading to slow steaming has replaced the traditional “first come – first serve”-system which leads to a “hurry up and wait”-behaviour. Energy and cost savings for goods owners and shipping companies, lower emissions for our planet.
    The goal of the project solution was that it was going to stay operational in the two ports of Gävle and Rauma after project. But the early implementation was so successful that the project partner FinTraffic (a public company responsible for many national operational tasks in Finland) decided to make the software available to all Finnish public ports as a Software as a Service (SaaS), even before the end of the project
    This has resulted in more than 25 ports using the tool operationally. The open source code continues to be developed. If a port wants additions, they pay for it and decide whether or not other ports can have access to that solution as well. Thus far most of the additions have been made publicly available, e.g. ordering water for the ship, or use the information in the system to trigger the invoicing process.
    In Sweden the Port of Gävle has hosted numerous study visits, and the Swedish Maritime Administration is now making the project specific information sharing service to Gävle available to all ports in Sweden.
    Several German ports are in the test phase and are expected to start operations later this year.
    Is it beneficial for the end-users? The waiting times for tug operators, stevedores, truckers, linesmen, pilots, etc. have all decreased. Waiting time is cost – efficiency is economically sustainability.
    Port authorities have acted like “coaches” in the project. However, without the “players”, all the operative actors in a port visit, the project would have fallen short.

    All actors in the two ports were meeting regularly in “living labs” starting early on in the project. Together they prioritised which information is the most important, how it should be used. They software tools (desktop and app) were basically designed by the end-users. Even though they were not project members.

    Some examples: Linesmen (handling the ropes on the quay side) did not have any information tool before – they now use the app. Pilots and terminals send and receive information in their existing system that integrate into the common information sharing tool, but sometimes use the app for an overview.
    Each port decides who should get access to the tool, in principle it could be any citizen.

    (Additional comment for the attached images. If used the name of the photographer needs to be stated)
    The solution is offered to all Finnish ports starting 2021. Currently more than 25 ports are using it operationally. Two Swedish ports are planning to invest in the solution.
    New projects with larger consortium are building on the experiences and the solution to focus on reducing the carbon dioxide footprint.
    The ICT Tool is based on open source code, which make it easily transferable, which was a requirement by Interreg Central Baltic.
    The project created processes, operating procedures, collaboration schemes and ICT tools that are lasting and that will continue to be in operation after the lifetime of the project. This was incorporated in the Activity Plan with deliverables guiding other stakeholders to re-use our work and follow our implementation step by step.
    Requirement specifications used in all procurement throughout the EF project are available as well.

    We argue that if you follow the deliverables step by step you can implement our solution anywhere in the world.