The Swedish Transport Administration's press release (in Swedish):
"The Swedish Transport Administration is responsible for planning infrastructure for all types of traffic. In addition, since 2013, we have funded research and innovation in the shipping sector. At present, long-term funding for sustainable shipping research, which can be jointly conducted by academia, industry and the public sector, is lacking.
We see a great need to stimulate the development of such a program in the shipping area. The program to be procured should focus thematically on sustainable shipping and aim at the three dimensions of sustainability, ie environmental, social and economic sustainability.
Such effort also helps ensure the industry's future needs for technical and academic competence.
"The program should involve all actors," says Rein Jüriado, chairman of the board concerning shipping research at the agency. "For example, there are currently only a few projects where ports actively participate."
The pre-commercial procurement is a method of creating competition and a supplier market already at an early stage of development. The goal is for the Swedish Transport Administration to systematically use pre-commercial procurement as a tool to drive the development of new solutions in the transport system.
This current procurement is published this week. Tenders must be submitted by week 42, and at the end of the year, contracts will be signed.
The Swedish Transport Agency will finally conclude an agreement with a main supplier. The supplier is responsible for a program office, with support from their partners. The preliminary studies and innovation projects funded in the programme shall have extensive co-financing from other actors than the Swedish Transport Administration. The degree of co-financing will be weighted in the evaluation of tenders.
The Swedish Transport Agency's investments in research and innovation in the transport sector are thematically divided into seven portfolios, where shipping is one. The so-called shipping portfolio is currently the largest state-funded investment in research and innovation in the shipping sector in Sweden. It encloses almost 60 million SEK per year."