Five Major Issues Facing the Naval-Maritime Industry

The naval industry and maritime transport face issues concerning decarbonization, the blue economy, and the technological advancements needed to remain competitive in the current globalized world.

Fremont, CA: Ships must meet higher standards that reduce fuel consumption and strive for emissions reduction and decarbonization. Another obstacle in an industry that frequently works with long-established shipyards facing a shift in their conventional way of working is the advent of digitalization and technology.

Also, the naval sector has produced significant developments in ship construction, batteries for ship electrification, new fuels, environmentally friendly ports, and intelligent logistics in recent years, all of which are supporting a more sustainable supply chain.

Here are five challenges in the naval-maritime and port sector:

Unmanned Vessels

While the word "unmanned" is more generally associated with airspace (drones), the naval industry is progressing toward the concept of ships without a pilot. There are already ferry companies that operate short to medium distance routes with an autopilot, based on technologies such as artificial intelligence.


Like all other sectors, naval and maritime transport need to change their production models to meet current environmental standards imposed by international agreements.

New propulsion systems

For many years, the diesel engine has become the standard for maritime transportation. Options such as biofuels like biodiesel and bioethanol are emerging as a result of environmental requirements. Also, the industry is looking at more sustainable sources like nuclear propulsion or the installation of renewable energy sources, while solar panel installation, for instance, is still complicated and can have a significant impact on the ship's stability.


The need to reinvent and continue innovating for increased efficiency and sustainability has become an unavoidable prerequisite, just like in any other industry. Despite their long histories, shipbuilding, modern logistics in ports, and passenger and freight transportation must continue to innovate to maintain their competitiveness and keep up with the global economy's demands.


The electric boat represents a potential for significant transformation in the automotive industry, even though this industry is more nuanced in its implementation. Even so, the production and purchase of electric leisure and small fishing boats have increased in recent years. Other larger vessels are now exploring full or at least hybrid solutions that reflect a before and after for the maritime industry's sustainability.

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