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Barcelona joins other world ports to showcase smart solutions

'Smart Ports' saw six major ports presenting new digital and sustainable strategies as part of Smart City Expo World Congress


22 November 2019 05:44 PM


Lorcan Doherty | Barcelona

The Port of Barcelona was one of six world ports showcasing their most advanced digital and sustainable projects this week at the 'Smart Ports. Piers of the Future' event, which took place during the Smart City Expo World Congress in the Catalan capital.

Along with the major ports of Antwerp, Hamburg, Los Angeles, Montreal and Rotterdam, Barcelona's port was represented at a dedicated booth in the congress, which also provided an opportunity for the six ports to share their future strategic plans.

The event also gave representatives of firms related to port activities a chance to showcase their most innovative ideas for complementing the digital and sustainable transformation strategies of ports, with 40 presentations given at the 'Smart Ports' booth.

Barcelona port president, Mercè Conesa, said “it's the first time that ports have shown great innovative projects in a congress focused on cities," adding that "the Port of Barcelona is committed to leading in Europe the transformation of ports into smart ports."

"Collaboration is the key"

The innovation manager at the Port of Antwerp, Piet Opstaele, added that "the whole industry is facing challenges. Collaboration, like this worldwide network, is the key. Continuous investments and innovations are necessary to keep the edge."

'Smart Ports' also included two side events: a conference addressing the upcoming IMO 2020 regulation, forcing ships to reduce the sulphur content of their fuels, and a summit at which representatives from various ports took part in debates around innovation.

It was the first time ports of this size had come together to host a joint event, but it may not be the last. "We're convinced that this first edition of 'Smart Ports' has been a complete success and that's why we're sure that there will be a second one,” added Conesa.


  • Some rows in a port using Smart Port technology (by Lluís Sibils)

  • Some rows in a port using Smart Port technology (by Lluís Sibils)