IMO’s ongoing work to counter piracy/armed
robbery against ships and other illicit activities at sea is underway at the
Mohammed Bin Naif Academy for Maritime Science and Security Studies, Jeddah,
Saudi Arabia (9-27 February).
Participants from 18 countries* are
sharing best practices and learning skills to deal with maritime crimes at sea
– including piracy/robbery, drug trafficking, marine terrorism, weapons
smuggling, human trafficking and more.
It is the second time that countries
across three regions have been invited to participate in such an event, which
is primarily intended for countries implementing the Djibouti Code of Conduct
(DCoC) and its Jeddah Amendment.
The training has been extended to
participants from countries involved in the West and Central Africa Code of
Conduct and the Regional Cooperation Agreement on Combating Piracy and Armed
Robbery against Ships in Asia (ReCAAP).
Female participants from Kenya,
Philippines, Saudi Arabia and Seychelles, took part in the training at the
Academy for the first time. This followed commitments made by Saudi Arabia to
support last year’s World Maritime Day 2019 theme “Empowering Women in the
Maritime Community” which raised awareness of the importance of gender
equality, in line with the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals, and
to highlight the important of the yet under-utilized contribution of women.
* Bahrain, Cameroon, Comoros, Djibouti,
Egypt, Jordan, Kenya, Mauritius, Mozambique, Oman, Nigeria, Philippines, Saudi
Arabia, Seychelles, Somalia, Sri Lanka, United Rep of Tanzania, Yemen
Removing barriers to women joining the maritime sector, the
importance of education and how to increase visibility of women in maritime
leadership roles – these were some of the key challenges under the spotlight at
a major symposium at IMO Headquarters in London (19 February).
The symposium was part of IMO’s continuing efforts to
maintain momentum in empowering women in the maritime community, and follow the
2019 IMO Assembly resolution to preserve the legacy of the 2019 World MaritimeTheme and work towards a barrier-free environment for women throughout the
maritime sector. It also reflected the 2020 World Maritime theme - sustainable shipping for sustainable planet - by focusing on the fifth
Sustainable Development Goal, gender equality.
Participants from all over the world had the opportunity to
hear and question three specialists on the subject – Professor Dr. Helen
Thanopoulou, Head of Operations Management of Shipping Companies at the
University of the Aegean of Greece; Ms. Sanchez Porras, Director General of the
Mexican Trust for Training and Education of Merchant Marine Personnel; and
Professor Dr. So-hyun Jo of the Korea Maritime and Ocean University.
The event was organised by the Republic of Korea and IMO,
with support from Mexico, Georgia, Canada and South Africa. Click for photos.
Finland has become the latest State to become Party to the Cape Town
Agreement on fishing vessel safety.
The Agreement outlines regulations designed to
protect the safety of crews and observers and provides a level playing field
for the industry while setting standards for fishing vessels of 24 meters
length and over.
The treaty will enter into force 12 months after at least 22
States, with an aggregate 3,600 fishing vessels of 24 meters in length and over
operating on the high seas have expressed their consent to be bound by it. With Finland’s accession, 14
countries have ratified the Agreement.
Finland’s accession follows IMO’s October 2020 conference on
fishing vessel safety in Torremolinos, Spain, during which nearly 50 States
signed the Torremolinos Declaration to publicly indicate their determination to
ensure the Cape Town Agreement will enter into force by the tenth
anniversary of its adoption (11 October 2022).
The entry into force is expected to improve
safety at sea in the fisheries sector worldwide. It will also be a useful tool
in combatting illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing and reducing
pollution from fishing vessels, including marine debris.
H.E. Mr. Markku Keinänen, Ambassador and Permanent
Representative of Finland to IMO, met IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim to
deposit the instrument of accession, at IMO Headquarters, London (18 February).
IMO 2020, the 0.50% limit of sulphur in ships'
fuel oil, has been in effect since 1 January 2020, cutting sulphur oxide emissions
from ships operating worldwide. From 1 March 2020, the carriage ban on
non-compliant fuel oil (except for ships with exhaust gas cleaning systems
installed) will enter into force, helping to support implementation of the
global sulphur limit. To support the safe and consistent sampling of fuel oil
being carried for use, and the enforcement of the carriage ban, IMO’s Sub-Committee
on Pollution Prevention and Response (PPR), meeting this week (17-21 February)
at IMO headquarters, will finalize
draft guidelines for the verification of the sulphur content of the fuel oil
carried for use on board a ship.
The Sub-Committee will also continue its work on revising the 2015 Guidelines for exhaust gas cleaning
systems (also known as “scrubbers”). The revision is aimed at enhancing the
uniform application of the guidelines, in light of recent technical
developments and experience gathered from approvals and operation of such
alternative compliance systems.
Work on evaluating and harmonizing rules and
guidance on the discharges from exhaust gas cleaning systems will begin. To
assist the discussions, a report from a task team established by the Joint Group of Experts on the Scientific Aspects of
Marine Environmental Protection (GESAMP) has been submitted. This report contains the
conclusions of the task team in relation to the available
evidence on the environmental effects of discharge water from exhaust gas
cleaning systems, as well as recommendations on the data, tools and approach that
could be used as basis for conducting a risk assessment of the possible effects
Marine biosafety is also
high on the agenda. The Sub-Committee will review a proposed amendment to the IMO Convention for the
Control of Harmful Anti-fouling Systems on Ships (AFS Convention), to include controls on the biocide cybutryne. The AFS
Convention already prohibits the use of biocides using organotin compounds.
work to prevent the spread of potentially harmful invasive aquatic species is
continuing. The Sub-Committee will be revising the guidance on commissioning
testing of ballast water management systems. Such systems may be used on ships to meet the
requirements of IMO’s Ballast
Water Management Convention, which has been in force since 2017 and aims to
prevent the spread of harmful species in ballast water.
Invasive species can also
hitch a ride on the outside of ships. The Sub-Committee will begin its review
of the IMO Biofouling Guidelines, which provide a globally consistent approach to the
management of biofouling – the accumulation of various aquatic organisms on
The Sub-Committee will carry on with agenda items aimed at minimizing
the impact of shipping on the fragile Arctic environment. It is expected to
progress work on developing measures to reduce the risks of use and carriage of
heavy fuel oil as fuel by ships in Arctic waters; and on reducing the impact on
the Arctic of Black Carbon emissions from international shipping.
The meeting was opened by IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim and
is being chaired by Dr Flavio Da Costa Fernandes (Brazil). Click for photos.
More women are joining the maritime ranks in a variety of professions within the industry. To encourage this trend and with a view to continuing the momentum to empower women in the maritime community, IMO is supporting a training course aimed at female officials from maritime and port authorities.
Twenty-two women from 10 francophone countries in Africa*, took part in the two-week "Women in Port Management" course, hosted in Le Havre, France (27 January - 7 February). The course covered lectures on port management, port security, marine environment, facilitation of maritime traffic, marketing, port logistics and other topics. Participants learnt about the necessary skills required to improve the management and operational efficiency of their ports.
Visits were organized to the Port of Le Havre and the Port of Rouen, giving participants the chance to experience for themselves the day-to-day operations of a port, with a view to applying this knowledge back in their respective countries.
The port management course was delivered through IMO's Women in Maritime programme in partnership with the Port Institute for Education and Research (IPER) and the Le Havre Port Authority. It comes as part of IMO's ongoing and increasing efforts to support the UN Sustainable Development Goal number five: achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls.
To date, 355 women have received training under this activity through 16 training courses held at IPER.
*Algeria, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Côte d'Ivoire, Djibouti, Guinea, Madagascar, Senegal, Seychelles and Togo.
For a ship to be considered seaworthy and safe it must be designed to remain stable and afloat in all conditions, whether intact or damaged. Mandatory criteria and recommended provisions regarding intact stability are set out in IMO's 2008 Intact Stability (IS) Code. Now, advanced computer technology is enabling so-called "second generation" intact stability criteria to be developed, for a comprehensive safety assessment of ship dynamics in waves.
IMO's Sub-Committee on Ship Design and Construction (SDC 7), meeting at IMO Headquarters (3-7 February), is expected to finalize a comprehensive set of interim guidelines on second generation intact stability criteria, including guidelines on vulnerability criteria, direct stability failure assessment and operational measures. The aim is to produce a set of guidelines for trial use. The session will also further develop associated explanatory notes.
The Sub-Committee is also set to finalize draft amendments to the Revised Explanatory Notes to SOLAS chapter II-1 subdivision and damage stability regulations.
Among other agenda items, the meeting is expected to finalize a draft new SOLAS chapter XV and a new draft International Code of Safety for Ships Carrying Industrial Personnel (IP Code). The Code will supplement existing IMO instruments, in order to facilitate safe carriage and safe transfer for industrial personnel employed in the offshore and energy sectors, such as for the construction, maintenance, decommissioning, operation or servicing of offshore facilities.
Safety recommendations for non-SOLAS ships operating in Polar waters, not currently covered by the Polar Code, are also on the agenda. The Sub-Committee will consider two sets of draft recommendations: for pleasure yachts above 300 gross tonnage not engaged in trade, operating in polar waters; and for safety measures for fishing vessels of 24 m in length and over. The latter will supplement the 2012 Cape Town Agreement, which will bring in a global regime of safety standards for fishing vessels when it comes into force.
The SDC Sub-Committee was opened by IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim and is being chaired by Kevin Hunter (United Kingdom). Click for photos.
west, central and southern African countries’ ability to prepare and respond to
oil spills is key to protecting the marine and shoreline environment in the
where the GI WACAF* project comes in – a cooperation between IMO and IPIECA,
the global oil and gas industry association for advancing environmental and
know how GI WACAF works with relevant national authorities in 22 African
countries? Go to the brand-new website www.giwacaf.net
to find out everything from latest news and progress map, to country profiles,
conventions and publications.
these countries includes helping to designate authorities in charge; ratifying
relevant international conventions; and developing a National Oil Spill
Contingency Plan. GI WACAF also runs training courses and exercises, and
supports the structuring of regional agreements.
more than 5,000 people have been trained under the project in over 100
activities across the 22 countries.
Global Initiative for West, Central and Southern Africa
Secretary-General Kitack Lim has appointed Ariane Gireud as Director of the Organization’s Conference Division, from 1 February 2020. The
division ensures the smooth running of IMO meetings, welcoming around 10,000
delegates per year and supporting the Organization’s work promoting safe,
secure, clean and sustainable shipping.
Conference Division comprises translation services, meeting services, word processing units,
as well as a
documents, language technologies and terminology section, and also ensures the provision
of simultaneous interpretation services during IMO meetings.
more by watching ‘Behind
the scenes: the making of IMO meetings’.
The Women's International Shipping and Trading Association Limited (WISTA International) and IMO have signed a Memorandum of Understanding on promoting greater diversity and inclusion through enhanced cooperation activities in the maritime field.
These activities will lay the groundwork for further discussion on how a diverse workforce will be essential for a sustainable future. Initiatives already under way include a study to collect and analyze data on the number of women employed in the maritime sector; developing a database of female experts in a wide range of maritime subjects available for speaking engagements to make panels more diverse and supporting implementation of IMO Assembly Resolution A.1147(31) on Preserving the legacy of the World Maritime theme for 2019 and Achieving a Barrier-Free Working Environment for Women in the Maritime Sector.
Another key part of the MoU is to strengthen cooperation and share best practices between the IMO-established regional women in maritime associations (WIMAs) and WISTA International's national WISTA Associations.
The MoU was signed by IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim and WISTA International President Despina Panayiotou Theodosiou.
Following this important event, a WISTA information session was organized at IMO Headquarters to raise awareness of the work of WISTA International and its regional/national branches and offer advice on how to join the Association.
A new IMO video which showcases IMO's new long-term strategy on mobilising resources for technical cooperation activities has been launched. The video which aligns with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), highlights the value and benefits of working with IMO and encourages active communication with potential donors and recipients.
The video premiered at the first regional Knowledge Partnership Workshop for the Caribbean, held in Kingston, Jamaica (20-24 January). The workshop aimed to demonstrate how the successful implementation of international regulations can be enhanced through effective sharing of knowledge, skills and experience. The workshop brought together national officials responsible for maritime affairs and official development assistance; as well as officials from international multilateral development banks, IGOs and NGOs. The participants increased their awareness of maritime issues, learned how to prioritise them in national development plans and, above all, benefitted from multi-way communication, making new connections with maritime and development cooperation counterparts from around the region.
The workshop was organized by IMO in collaboration with the Maritime Authority of Jamaica.
Participating countries and dependent territories or parts represented at the workshop were: Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Belize, Curaçao, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Sint Maarten, Suriname and Trinidad and Tobago.
Participating organizations represented at the workshop were: Association of Caribbean States, Basel Convention Regional Centre for Training and Technology Transfer for the Caribbean, Commonwealth Secretariat, Inter-American Development Bank, International Association of Marine Aids to Navigation and Lighthouse Authorities, International Hydrographic Organization, Caribbean Development Bank and the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean Sub-Regional Headquarters for the Caribbean.
At the World Economic Forum in Davos this week, IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim is calling for renewed cooperation from all stakeholders to tackle the urgent issues of air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions from shipping.
"When temperature records are routinely broken, icecaps are melting and some parts of the world are flooding while others are burning, there can be little doubt that addressing climate change must be humankind's major priority," he told fellow leaders.
IMO's strategy is to reduce sector-wide emissions by at least 50% by 2050. To deliver this, significant numbers of zero-carbon ships, or ships that can be easily adapted to use low or zero carbon fuels later in their life, will have to enter the fleet as early as the 2030s, Mr Lim said.
Stressing the vital role of IMO's as the shipping industry's global regulator, he said, "Ambitious regulatory targets will act as the catalyst for technology, triggering research, development and innovation," adding "now is the time to start developing the vessels, the fuels, the delivery mechanisms and all the other necessary infrastructure to support zero-emission shipping."
Turning specifically to the need for a collective approach throughout the entire global supply chain, he said, "Collaboration in this area is likely to include developing and testing low or zero-carbon fuels; better communication and planning over berth availability to help with speed-optimization and just-in-time arrival; and supplying cleaner on-shore power for ships in port."
Mr Lim was also keen to stress that planning for a zero-carbon shipping industry cannot be done in isolation. "Infrastructure developments and investment decisions also need to be made collaboratively," he said. "Research and development initiatives need to be cross-sectorial. New technologies need to be transferable and scalable."
The World Economic Forum in Davos brings world leaders together to discuss progress towards the Paris Agreement and the Sustainable Development Goals. Mr Lim is addressing a number of different fora on how shipping, transport and the supply chain as a whole can make a successful transition to a low or zero carbon future and contribute to global sustainability.
Induction training is underway for staff from Somalia’s
Maritime Administration ahead of the relaunch of the country’s maritime sector.
The training, taking place in the Djibouti Regional Training
Centre (19-23 January), is part of IMO/UNSOM
efforts to support the Federal Government of Somalia and regional authorities to set up
the core functions of a maritime administration and build a firm basis for
future maritime development.
Participants are focusing on the rights and obligations of
relevant international maritime conventions* and legal frameworks that will be
necessary in putting the newly-developed Somali Maritime Code into action. The
relaunch is a vital step in Somalia’s recovery from a long conflict and will be
a key tool in developing practical ways to implement the United Nations' 2030
Agenda for Sustainable Development.
* the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea
(UNCLOS); IMO conventions on safety of life at sea (SOLAS),
prevention of pollution from ships (MARPOL),
seafarer training (STCW);
and the International Labour Organization’s Maritime Labour Convention (MLC).
Search and rescue at sea depends on the integrated satellite and terrestrial radiocommunication communications system - the Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS). The GMDSS is mandatory under the International convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS). IMO's Sub-Committee on Navigation, Communications and Search and Rescue (NCSR 7, 15-24 January) will continue its ongoing work to review GMDSS requirements, to enable the use of modern communication systems in the GMDSS, while removing requirements to carry obsolete systems. The aim is to finalize the review in 2021, for submission to the Maritime Safety Committee (MSC), so that SOLAS amendments can be adopted for entry into force in 2024.
The Sub-Committee is set to complete its update of the International SafetyNET Services Manual. SafetyNET is an integral part of the GMDSS, providing an automatic direct-printing satellite-based service for the promulgation of safety information and warnings.
Work on developing safety measures for non-SOLAS ships operating in polar waters will continue. The Polar Code is mandatory under SOLAS, but this generally excludes fishing vessels, pleasure yachts, smaller ships under 500 gross tons and vessels on domestic voyages.
Proposed revisions to guidelines on places of refuge for ships in need of assistance will also be considered.
The Sub-Committee will receive information on the Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS), with a view to considering its recognition as a future component of the world-wide radio navigation system. Information will also be received on the Quasi-Zenith Satellite System (QZSS) (Japan) for development of performance standards for QZSS equipment and with a view to its future recognition.
The Sub-Committee is expected to revise guidelines for vessel traffic services. The session will also review proposed amended ships' routeing measures, discuss matters relating to the functioning and operation of the Long-Range Identification and Tracking (LRIT) and prepare liaison statements to the International Telecommunications Union.
IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim opened the session, which is being chaired by Mr. Ringo Lakeman (Netherlands). (Click for photos).
The second regional Knowledge
Partnership Workshop in Asia is underway in Bangkok, Thailand (16-20 December).
Co-organised by IMO, Thailand’s Ministry of Transport and UNESCAP – the United
Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia – the workshop is designed to
support maritime technical cooperation activities in the region.
The workshop brings together
officials from transport ministries, responsible for maritime affairs, and
finance ministries, responsible for official development assistance. Participants
share knowledge, skills and experience and meet maritime and development
cooperation counterparts from around the region to seek cooperation
opportunities. Increasing awareness of maritime
issues and prioritising them in national development plans is another important
The workshop provides a platform for
donors to prioritise their interests and identify the needs and demands of
recipient countries; and for recipients to have a better understanding of how
to access the various resources available to address their needs. Both sides
are improving their understanding of each other’s mechanisms for accessing and
delivering funding and support.
The workshop is part of IMO’s new long-term
strategy on mobilising resources for technical cooperation activities. This
embodies a more proactive and methodical approach for generating new resources,
encouraging partnerships with IMO Member States, the United Nations system and
multilateral development banks, through new and innovative projects. It
encourages active communication with potential donors and recipients to
highlight the value and benefits of working with IMO and its alignment with the
Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Participating Member States and
organizations represented at the workshop are: Australia, Bangladesh,
Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, China, Indonesia, Islamic Republic of Iran, the
Lao People's Democratic Republic, Maldives, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan,
the Philippines, the Republic of Korea, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Viet
Nam and UNESCAP.
The IMO Hong Kong Convention will set global standards for safe and environmentally-sound ship recycling, when it enters into force. A national workshop to raise awareness of the treaty and its related guidelines has taken place in Karachi, Pakistan (11-13 December), to help prepare the country for ratification and implementation of the Convention. Nearly 40 participants from relevant Pakistan stakeholders, including the Ministry of Maritime Affairs, Pakistan Navy, Pakistan Ship Breakers' Association, Ministry of Commerce and Textile, Customs and Marine Academy - as well as from the International Labour Organization (ILO) and the World Wide fund for Nature (WWF) - attended the workshop and shared their experiences on ship recycling.
The workshop was organized by IMO in collaboration with the Pakistan Ministry of Maritime Affairs to support capacity building for Pakistan on safe and environmentally sound recycling of ships. Pakistan is one of the top five ship recycling countries in the world, which between them account for more than 98% of all ship recycling by gross tonnage – the others are Bangladesh, China, India and Turkey (of these, two are already Parties to the Hong Kong Convention: India and Turkey).
Countries surrounding the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden have
pledged to make progress towards ratifying, implementing and enforcing IMO’s
liability and compensation regime*, thanks to a workshop in Dubai (8-12
The regime covers a wide range of pollution incidents,
wreck removal, carriage of passengers and luggage – providing a
system which enables liability to be determined and ensures that any
compensation due is paid.
Countries need to ratify and implement rules and regulations in order for them
to be effective.
Participants from Egypt, Jordan, Oman, Saudi Arabia, United
Arab Emirates and Yemen were given a comprehensive overview of the relevant IMO
liability conventions. Participants also shared information on their
countries’ law-making process and implementation of IMO conventions – including
on drafting national maritime legislation.
The United Arab
Emirates and Oman indicated their intention to work towards ratifying a number
of the treaties concerned.
The workshop was organized by the Federal Transport
Authority – Land & Maritime of the United Arab Emirates, in collaboration
* including treaties covering wreck removal, salvage, carriage of hazardous and noxious substances, passengers, CLC, Fund, Bunkers Convention and limitation
Mediterranean coastal states have agreed to increase resources for the IMO-administered Regional Marine Pollution Emergency Response Centre for the Mediterranean Sea (REMPEC), which assists Mediterranean coastal states to build national capacities to prevent marine pollution from ships and act in the event of major incidents.Parties to the Barcelona Convention for the protection of the Mediterranean, meeting in Naples, Italy (2-5 December), recognised increased workload and new environmental issues (such as air pollution) assigned to REMPEC and the other five regional activity centres. The centres have been established under the Mediterranean Action Plan to support environmental protection of the Mediterranean Sea.The meeting agreed to new standards and guidelines which have been developed by REMPEC. These include: standards and guidelines under the Offshore Protocol, which aims at protecting against pollution from offshore activities; and guidelines on port reception facilities (Guidelines on the Provision of Reception Facilities in Ports and the Delivery of Ship-Generated Wastes and the Application of Charges at Reasonable Costs for the Use of Port Reception Facilities).The Mediterranean States also adopted a roadmap towards the possible future designation of the Mediterranean Sea as a sulphur oxides (SOx) Emission Control Area under the IMO regulations for prevention of air pollution from ships (MARPOL Annex VI). A new global sulphur limit for sulphur in ships fuel oil comes into effect from 1 January 2020, cutting the limit for sulphur in ships' fuel oil to 0.50% from 3.50% - but in emission control areas, the limit is even lower, at 0.10%.IMO and REMPEC were represented at the 21st Ordinary Meeting of the Contracting Parties to the Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment and the Coastal Region of the Mediterranean (COP 21), which brought together more than 350 delegates from the 21 Mediterranean coastal states. In a video message, IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim stressed the importance placed on IMO’s longstanding cooperation with UN
Environment in working towards the Sustainable Development Goals, particularly those
related to sustainable oceans and seas.
With the rise of transport by sea of chemicals and gases (both in bulk and containerized), proper preparedness for response to potential spill incidents involving hazardous and noxious substances (HNS) is increasingly important.
The Regional Marine Pollution Emergency Response Centre for the Mediterranean Sea (REMPEC) hosted a three-day training in Tekirdağ, Turkey (3-5 December).
The workshop brought together over 50 response managers from the public and private sectors to examine considerations and challenges in responding to HNS incidents occurring in national waters.
The workshop was based on the OPRC-HNS Model Training Courses which has been developed to assist IMO Member States in their efforts to build national capacity in preparing for and responding to HNS incidents, in line with the OPRC-HNS Protocol.
The OPRC-HNS Protocol aims to establish national systems for preparedness and response and to provide a global framework for international co-operation in combating major incidents or threats of marine pollution.
The training was hosted by the Government of Turkey and was held on the premises of the recently inaugurated National Maritime Safety and Emergency Response Centre (UDEM), and funded by the IMO's Integrated Technical Cooperation Programme, REMPEC's Mediterranean Trust Fund (MTF) as well as from the European Commission's Directorate-General for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Negotiations.
IMO has presented its latest work to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from shipping to the UN climate change conference (COP 25) in Spain (2-13 December). IMO's initial GHG strategy contains a commitment to cutting GHG emissions from shipping as a matter of urgency and to phasing them out entirely as soon as possible. The COP heard that IMO's Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) has approved draft amendments to strengthen the energy efficiency design requirements for new ships; and an intersessional working group meeting has considered various mandatory proposals aimed at reducing the carbon intensity of existing ships. Further development of concrete proposals is expected at the next intersessional working group and MEPC meetings in March-April 2020.
IMO also reported to the Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technical Advice (SBSTA 51) on the continued successful execution of two important capacity-building projects (GloMEEP and the global GMN network for energy-efficient shipping), which are supporting developing countries in the implementation of IMO's energy efficiency measures; and the initiation of a third, GreenVoyage-2050 project, to support global efforts to demonstrate and test technical solutions for reducing GHG emissions in shipping and enhance knowledge and information sharing to support the Initial IMO GHG Strategy.
Meanwhile, IMO's mandatory requirement for data collection on fuel oil consumption of ships is reaching its first full year of reporting; and the fourth IMO GHG study has been initiated, to provide an updated inventory of GHG emissions from international shipping.
In addition to its work to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from shipping, IMO is regulating climate change mitigation technologies, including carbon capture and storage in sub-seabed geological formations and marine geoengineering, through the London Convention and the London Protocol, to ensure protection of the marine environment (read more here).
Download IMO COP 25 statement here. IMO will participate in a number of side events during the COP 25 summit.
Opening IMO's biennial IMO Assembly (25 November-4 December), IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim made a specific call on Member States for "concrete action" to deliver IMO's GHG reduction strategy.
Work is underway to further develop Viet Nam’s national oil
spill contingency plan at a workshop in Ho Chi Minh City, Viet Nam, this week
Forty participants from across 10 government departments and
the oil and gas and shipping industry are taking part in the workshop, which is
the latest in a series of IMO-assisted events on oil spill contingency in
Participants are being introduced to international good
practices and developments in the field of oil spill preparedness and response
– and supported to identify areas for improvement in Viet Nam’s existing
national framework. An action plan to finalize the draft National Oil Spill
Contingency Plan will be agreed.
Accession to IMO’s Oil Pollution Preparedness, Response and
Convention was also discussed, as part of Viet Nam’s plan to become a party to
the treaty. Under the convention, countries are required to establish measures
for dealing with pollution incidents, either nationally or in cooperation with
The workshop was organized under the framework of the Global
Initiative project for South East Asia (GI SEA),
a joint project with the oil and gas industry (IPIECA), which
supports implementation of OPRC Convention.
A regional workshop organised by IMO has provided senior maritime administration officials in Latin America with the latest information on current and future developments at the Organization. The workshop for the regional maritime authorities networks, ROCRAM and ROCRAM-CA was held at IMO Headquarters in London (26 November) in the margin of the 31st IMO Assembly.
The 28 participants* received detailed information about the activities within the IMO's Integrated Technical Cooperation Programme (ITCP) aimed at building capacity in the region to comply with international rules and standards related to maritime safety and the prevention of maritime pollution. Participants also heard from technical officers on issues such as the IMO Audits Scheme. They also had a chance to ask questions on the outcomes of many IMO meetings of special interest to their regions.
The following countries attended: Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, México, Nicaragua, Panamá, Perú, Uruguay, Venezuela, as well as by the SECROCRAM and COCATRAM Secretariats.
Well-trained seafarers are essential to safe
ship navigation in Polar waters and IMO has been playing its part with a
training course for maritime instructors, underway in Valparaíso, Chile (18-22
The course is training participants from
maritime training institutions in South America responsible for training
seafarers – with a focus on IMO’s Polar Code. The code, when properly applied,
is a powerful tool for safeguarding the environment and protecting the lives of
seafarers and passengers in the challenging polar regions.
It entered into force in January 2017 –
setting out mandatory standards covering the full range of design,
construction, equipment, operational, training and environmental protection
matters that apply to ships operating in the inhospitable waters surrounding
the two poles.
The training course is supporting the
participants develop competence-based training programmes, update existing
programmes and improve the use of relevant IMO model courses.
information about the Polar Code, including videos and infographics, can be
What do successful, well-run ports and female empowerment have in
common? Both can make a significant contribution to sustainable economic
IMO is providing support to eight female
officials from developing countries, with an emphasis on Pacific Small Island
Developing States, attending a Port Senior Management Programme held at the
Galilee International Management Institute (GIMI) in Nahalal, Israel, (6-19
The two-week course provides
participants* with key information and updates on innovations in the port
industry. Subjects covered include global trends and advances in port
development, management and operations; port security and efficiency in
container terminals; and international law concerning ports and ships.
Organized visits to the Israeli Maritime Training Authority in Akko and the Port of Haifa, as well as practical simulator exercises, enabled participants to experience for
themselves the day-to-day operations of a port, with a view to applying this
knowledge back in their respective countries.
The event was delivered through IMO's
gender and capacity-building programme,
in collaboration with GIMI. It comes as part of IMO's continuous efforts to
support the UN Sustainable Development Goal 5 to achieve gender
equality and empower all women and girls.
* Participants from: Cabo Verde, Fiji,
Kiribati, Mongolia, Papua New Guinea, Seychelles and Solomon Islands
States in the western Indian Ocean and the Gulf of Aden area have adopted a plan of action to ensure better coordination of regional efforts to enhance maritime security. During a high-level regional meeting in Mombasa, Kenya (13-14 November), signatory States to the revised Code of Conduct concerning the repression of piracy, armed robbery against ships and illicit maritime activity in the western Indian Ocean and the Gulf of Aden Area* agreed to establish a governance framework to champion implementation of the code.
A Steering Committee will be established along with working groups on information sharing and coordination. This should help ensure better coordination of capacity building through concerted efforts to leverage synergies, avoid duplication of effort and achieve better collaboration with donors and implementing partners, to promote improved programmes to deal with the wide range of maritime security threats in the region.
The Working Group on Information Sharing will spearhead work on the development of an information sharing network, including a plan to establish multi-agency National Maritime Information Sharing Centres. There will also be support for the development of regional maritime information sharing centres.
The Working Group on Coordination of Effort will be responsible for championing coordination of capacity building efforts, including work to enhance maritime domain awareness and coordination of training activities.
The Mombasa meeting was jointly organized by IMO and the Republic of Kenya with financial contribution from the United Kingdom.
*Known as the Jeddah Amendment to the Djibouti Code of Conduct 2017
An effective maritime transport system is an important foundation for
sustainable development. But it needs proper planning and a solid policy
foundation. So, as part of its efforts to help deliver the global Sustainable Development
Goals, IMO encourages and assists its Member States to devise national maritime
A seminar on maritime transport policy, delivered by IMO and the faculty of
the World Maritime University is now an integral part of the curriculum at
IMO’s Malta-based International Maritime Law Institute (IMLI) – and the fourth
in the series has just been completed (13-15 November).
The seminar highlights the
importance of a national maritime transport policy to guide planning, decision
making and legislation in the maritime sector. In particular, the importance of
maritime transport policy
in relation to developing maritime legislation and the close relation between
policy and legislation is emphasised. At the
end of the seminar the students participate in a practical group exercise,
during which they formulate the key aspects of a maritime transport policy for
an imaginary state.
By teaching students from
developing countries how to formulate their national maritime transport
policies, IMO contributes to several of the SDGs.
The seminar is the
result of continuing collaboration between IMO and its two global maritime
training institutions – the World Maritime University and IMLI – which help to
train the future leaders of the maritime world.