HOME > About MEH > Background of the Project
 
The Project Office is
located at:
Kantor Stasiun Radio
Pantai Batam
Jalan Sei Tering Number 1
Batam 29451, Indonesia
background of MEH-project
The Straits of Malacca and Singapore, situated between Sumatra and the Malay Peninsula, are approximately 1,000 kilometers long, 300 kilometers wide at their north-west entrance, and just 12 kilometers wide at their south-east entrance, between Singapore and Indonesia’s Riau Archipelago.

The Straits are shallow, with narrow channels, irregular tides and shifting bottom topography, and hence are hazardous to navigation for large ships.
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/   Despite their difficult navigational features, the Straits are the shortest and hence the preferred shipping route between the Indian Ocean and the South China Sea, and for oil tankers trading between the Persian Gulf and the fast-growing countries of East Asia.

Although the current maritime safety infrastructures and regulatory mechanisms in place in the Straits of Malacca and Singapore have reduced the frequency of ship collisions, groundings and oil spills, occasional incidents have occurred in recent years and some of these incidents have caused by oil spills. An innovative approach to improving the management of maritime traffic and marine environment protection
in the Straits could ameliorate these impacts and enhance the carrying capacity of the Straits for various uses and activities.

 

the establishment of MEH System
Recent enhancements in maritime safety infrastructure and regulatory mechanisms have improved navigational safety and traffic flow. Singapore has an efficient radar-based ship position monitoring system covering the Singapore Strait. In 1998, the three littoral states of Republic of Indonesia, Malaysia, and Republic of Singapore jointly commissioned a mandatory ship reporting system (STRAITREP) for the most congested 300 kilometer section of the Straits from One Fathom Bank to the Singapore Strait, which combines radar and automatic ship identification and tracking. However, the threat of collisions and groundings and of consequent environmental damage is still significant and, with rapid traffic growth, is increasing.   /
  The need and justification for an enhanced information technology system in the Straits of Malacca and Singapore to address navigational safety and transboundary marine pollution issues was initiated by the Global Environment Facility (GEF) pilot phase project entitled, GEF/UNDP/IMO Regional Programme for the Prevention and Management of Marine Pollution in the East Asian Seas in 1996.

 

Project Financing

The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD, i.e., the World Bank), as implementing agency, mobilized co-financing for the MEH Demonstration Project through a GEF grant whilst co-financing is provided by the commercial shipping industry and the littoral States of Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore. In addition, the Republic of Korea provided a grant to the Project covering aspects on information technology.

  A memorandum of agreement was signed between the Republic of Korea through the Ministry of Land, Transport and Marine Affairs (formerly, the MOMAF) and IMO was signed on 23 November 2007 formalizing the financial contribution of the Republic of Korea to the MEH Demonstration Project.

The total Project cost will be financed by the Global Environment Facility, private sector participants (ship-owners), and by the three littoral states, with a grant from the Republic of Korea through the Ministry of Land, Transport and Maritime Affairs.
Benefits&Expectations
The Marine Electronic Highway project aims to establish a regional mechanism in the Straits of Malacca and Singapore for enhanced maritime safety and marine environment protection with a sustainable financial component in a co-operative arrangement with the three littoral States of Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore and partnership with the Republic of Korea, the International Hydrographic Organization (IHO), the International Association of Independent Tanker Owners (INTERTANKO) and the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS).

The MEH system with its environmental modules can be used in marine pollution response and control such as to predict the direction and speed of oil spill and aid in response and clean-up. It is also possible to use it to identify and track ships that illegally discharge their bilges or dump other oily wastes. The Marine Electronic Highway (MEH) is envisioned to be a regional network of marine information technologies linked through the ENCs-ECDIS. The availability of differential global positioning system (DGPS) with accuracy of 1 to 5 meters enhances the navigational accuracy of ENCs-ECDIS especially in congested and confined waters.