In a groundbreaking move that solidifies the UAE’s status as a global leader in sustainability and energy transition, the UAE Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure (MOEI) has announced the establishment of the “UAE Maritime Decarbonisation Centre.”
As the first-of-its-kind Centre in the MENA region and the fourth globally.
This pioneering initiative, developed in collaboration with DNV marks a historic milestone not only for the UAE but also for the entire Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region and sets a new standard for maritime decarbonisation efforts worldwide.
The official signing ceremony to commemorate this historic partnership took place at the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) headquarters in London, UK.
The signing brought together high-level government officials, industry leaders, and international stakeholders to celebrate this momentous occasion.
By leveraging the expertise of DNV and harnessing the UAE’s strategic geographic location and maritime influence, the Centre aims to drive research, innovation, and collaboration among key stakeholders to accelerate the adoption of sustainable practices, technologies, and policies in the maritime sector.
Setting a new standard for maritime decarbonisation
Commenting on this partnership, Suhail bin Mohammed Al Mazrouei, Minister of Energy and Infrastructure, said, “The UAE leads numerous global competitiveness indicators in the maritime sector. It ranks 3rd globally in the Bunker Supply Index, 5th as a key competitive maritime hub and 12th in the transport lines index. This is a result of the competitive business environment the UAE provides, which attracts major international maritime companies and makes the country’s ports a preferred destination for international shipping lines. However, we will not rest on our laurels; we want to occupy the top position in all international maritime indicators. We look forward to innovations and digital platforms to contribute to enhancing the UAE’s position and improving its global ranking.”
Al Mazrouei added, “The establishment of the UAE Maritime Decarbonisation Centre reflects our unwavering commitment to addressing climate change and promoting sustainable practices within the maritime industry. By collaborating with DNV, we aim to leverage their expertise and global network to drive innovation and accelerate the adoption of decarbonisation technologies. This Centre will play a pivotal role in advancing our national and regional sustainability goals, while contributing to the global efforts in combating climate change.”
Reinforcing the UAE sustainability goals
The establishment of the UAE Maritime Decarbonisation Centre is a testament to the UAE’s unwavering dedication to achieving its ambitious sustainability goals outlined in the UAE Net Zero 2050 Strategy. By spearheading the maritime decarbonisation efforts, the UAE aims to drive greenhouse gas (GHG) reductions that exceed global ambitions, positioning itself as a leading force in the global fight against climate change.
The Centre will serve as a hub for research, development, and implementation of innovative technologies and strategies to reduce CO2 emissions in the maritime industry.
It will conduct joint-industry projects, incubator and accelerator programmes, and future talent development initiatives. Furthermore, it will provide access to funding opportunities, foster collaboration among industry stakeholders, and serve as a knowledge hub by publishing research and information.
“We are very pleased to collaborate with the UAE’s Ministry of Infrastructure & Energy to establish the Maritime Decarbonization Centre,” said Knut Ørbeck-Nilssen, CEO of DNV Maritime. “Initiatives like the Centre are essential as we look to accelerate towards a decarbonised future. We need to build via cooperation, foster innovation, and scale local strengths into global leadership. With its strategic location and strong support from industry leaders, the Centre is poised to become a hub for maritime decarbonisation efforts.”
A maritime hub for business excellence and innovation
This initiative aligns perfectly with the UAE’s preparations for hosting COP28, where the nation will showcase its commitment to sustainability and energy transition on a global stage. The UAE Maritime Decarbonisation Centre will play a crucial role in strengthening the country’s position as a hub for sustainable innovation and global collaboration during COP28.
Hessa Al Malek, Advisor to the Minister for Maritime Transport Affairs, the UAE Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure, said, “At the Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure, we seek to unify the maritime sector to build the UAE Maritime Cluster, and turn it into a powerhouse that enhances business growth opportunities and creates new capabilities for companies by bringing them together. Digital technologies are the best way to build this cluster, standardise information related to the maritime sector and develop innovative mechanisms to explore business opportunities that can benefit all stakeholders.”
Al Malek added, “This partnership is yet another step to promote innovation in the maritime sector, which has become an international incubator for quality ideas. At the current stage, we focus all our innovations on building a sustainable and environmentally-friendly maritime sector. The UAE Maritime Decarbonisation Centre will serve as a vital hub for research, collaboration, and knowledge transfer in the field of maritime decarbonization. Through strategic partnerships and initiatives, we will focus on developing and implementing sustainable solutions that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and enhance energy efficiency in maritime operations. This Centre aligns with our vision of positioning the UAE as a global leader in the sustainable maritime sector and driving the transition towards a greener future.
This partnership is complemented by many other quality projects and initiatives the Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure has already launched. These include the UAE Maritime Cluster initiative and the Maritime Network, which aims to build a global network of professionals and experts to enhance the competitiveness of the UAE’s maritime sector and market it globally, making use of the strong presence of international maritime companies in the UAE.
Source: WAM / Hazem Hussein