When the Maritime 2050 strategy was published in January 2019, it was the first major strategy comprehensively outlining government and industry priorities and ambitions for the future of the UK maritime sector.
The document set out over 180 recommendations across seven themes, all intended to ensure the UK secures its position as a globally renowned, competitive maritime nation. These themes spanned widely, anticipating challenges and opportunities ahead on the environment, security and resilience, infrastructure, people, competitive advantage, innovation and technology and trade, and the strategy detailed the ways in which the maritime sector – through both .through both government and industry action – could capitalise on these opportunities in the short, medium and long-term.
At the halfway mark for the short-term recommendations, Maritime UK and its members have determined to take stock of where the sector finds itself on the journey to realising the strategy’s ambitions. This is to ensure that progress is appropriately monitored, and to provide a basis for the consideration of current gaps in delivery or reconfigurations that may have to be made due to changed circumstances; not unlikely for a strategy spanning thirty years. In the period since the publication of Maritime 2050, major geopolitical, economic, and societal shocks have both highlighted the need for a strategic response to the major challenges of our time, such as climate change, but also complicated its delivery. Despite external changes however, the Maritime 2050 strategy has remained relevant and continues to provide a roadmap for the progress of the sector that can help respond to the additional challenges of recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic. The pandemic has brought into sharp relief the essential nature of maritime supply chains and its key workers in keeping the country supplied and connected. Delivering upon the recommendations of Maritime 2050 will contribute to future resilience in the face of other unprecedented circumstances.