The second meeting on the operational safety of domestic ferries was held at the Nanjing International Conference Hotel in the historic city of Nanjing, China from 9 to 11 October 2013. The meeting was a follow-up to the first regional meeting for Asia held in Bali, Indonesia, in November 2011, where the Bali Action Plan was agreed upon.
The meeting was hosted by the China Maritime Safety Administration under the technical co-operation agreement between the Government of China and IMO.
In opening the meeting, representatives from the IMO stressed the importance of domestic ferry safety not only to the Organization but to the IMO Secretary-General himself. The importance of domestic ferry safety was echoed by representatives from the host government, who acknowledged the varying difficulties faced by countries in the operation of ferries in their domestic trade, whether in inland waters, rivers, territorial seas, or archipelagic waters.
The meeting included country presentations through which critical input was provided by the participants on how each administration addressed domestic ferry safety within their jurisdictions. Best practices of each administration were also presented and information on new technology under research and development in China was shared with the meeting delegations.
The meeting concluded with The Nanjing Plan which covered the action required to be taken by the four constituents, namely, Governments, IMO, all stakeholders, and meeting delegations, to realize the Plan. The Plan is seen as a means for closer co-operation among the meeting participants to allow the continued sharing of ideas to progress measures within the region to improve operational safety of domestic ferries.
The meeting was attended by 46 participants composed of representatives from both the government sector and the private sector from Australia, Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, India, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Republic of Korea, Singapore, Thailand, Timor Leste and Viet Nam.