PTP joins Malaysia-Australia decarbonization initiative to fuel maritime transformation

The Malaysian Port of Tanjung Pelepas (PTP), a joint venture between APM Terminals (30%) and the MMC Group, has been selected to join the Partnerships for Infrastructure (P4I) initiative, a government-to-government decarbonization scheme between Malaysia and Australia.

The P4I project aims to spearhead Malaysia’s decarbonizing effort in the maritime industry and to foster inclusive growth through sustainable infrastructure in Southeast Asia.

Malaysia has the potential to develop into a regional green fuel bunkering hub with the support of both industry and government, according to a study by the Australian Government’s Partnership for Infrastructure (P4I). The study also found that methanol is the green fuel option receiving the most investment from shipping lines.

Image credit PTP

The study was undertaken in response to a request from Malaysia’s Transport Ministry (MoT) to better understand zero-carbon bunkering and explore the potential for green refueling sites in Malaysia.

We hope that the successful implementation of this initiative will become a game changer in transforming the regional maritime industry and further promote opportunities for Malaysia to lead in this area of maritime decarbonization,” said PTP Chief Executive Officer, Marco Neelsen.

“Given the size and strategic location of PTP, it has the potential to play a key role regionally and globally in supporting maritime and trade decarbonization,”
commented Executive General Manager Commercial at Port of Melbourne, Shaun Mooney.

According to Neelsen, rising fuel prices and carbon taxes will be costly to those who do not transition.

“There will be an extra cost in the future, so we need to start incorporating it,” he says.

“Our customers, which are the shipping lines, forwarders, warehouses and their customers, have different demands than they had 10 years ago. Therefore, this is part of our transformation journey. It has been requested by customers, whose children are asking questions [about how sustainable their products are]. The logistics [industry] has to adapt to it,” concludes Marco Neelsen, CEO of PTP.

The company plans to electrify all its rubber tyred gantry (RTG) cranes — mobile cranes that stack and transport containers — and yard by the end of this year. It is also testing electric prime movers, which are the trucks that move containers, and electric or hybrid fuel tugs and pilot boats. PTP’s digital transformation also involves tracking its assets and using digital twins.

“Digitalization, operational efficiency and sustainability are all moving as one transformation activity. It’s something that we can see having a positive impact. Rather than working on your own, we do the transformation together,” says Khairul Amalin Abd Rahman, Senior General Manager at PTP.

PTP’s decarbonization goal is to reduce 45% of its emissions by 2030, having already shaved 30% off its carbon emissions by 2021 compared with its 2011 baseline via electrification and decarbonization of assets.

Over the next five years, PTP has earmarked RM3 billion (around USD 640 million) to step up efforts to upgrade its current terminal footprint, including automation, digitalization, and other port functions.

One of the technologies used at PTP is the vessel traffic management system. The VTMS is connected to the Marine Resource Management System (MRMS) and Vessel Traffic Monitoring and Information System (VTMIS) — both of which are used to step up measures to become a “green” port. It improves the efficiency of vessel traffic movements and the safety of navigation.

The MRMS is able to integrate the entire process, from booking a berth to populating shipping registers, ordering pilots and providing vessel arrivals and departures. In 2022, PTP handled 10,608 vessel calls.