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    Coronavirus (COVID-19) - advice for seafarers and shipping

    Advice to people on how to protect themselves and those around them from getting the disease.

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    Supporting seafarers on the frontline of COVID-19

    The COVID-19 pandemic has put seafarers around the world in precarious situations. Travel restrictions mean some cannot leave their ships, be repatriated home, or even get urgent medical assistance. IMO has established an internal team to help resolve individual cases, often working alongside other organizations.

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    Enhancing fishing vessel safety to save lives

    Fishing is one of the most dangerous professions in the world. It is estimated that thousands of fishers lose their lives every year. That is why IMO is hosting a number of regional webinars on the topic as part of its longstandingwork, alongside other stakeholders, to enhance fishing vessel safety – and save lives at sea. This work will also contribute to the battle against Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) fishing.

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    IMO’s work to cut GHG emissions from ships

    IMO is contributing to the global fight against climate change. IMO has adopted mandatory measures to cut emissions. In 2018, IMO adopted an initial strategy on reduction of GHG emissions from ships. IMO projects promote innovation and support developing countries, especially small island developing States (SIDS) and least developed countries (LDCs).

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    IMO and autonomous shipping

    IMO has a key strategic direction to Integrate new and advancing technologies in the regulatory framework. IMO is currently assessing existing IMO instruments to see how they might apply to ships with varying degrees of automation, through a regulatory scoping exercise on Maritime Autonomous Surface Ships (MASS).

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    Crew change crisis

    COVID-related travel restrictions have created significant hurdles to crew changes and repatriation of seafarers, which has led to a growing humanitarian crisis as well as significant concerns for the safety of seafarers and shipping.

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    Facilitation (FAL) – enhancing the free flow of trade by ship

    The main objective of the IMO's Convention on Facilitation of International Maritime Traffic (FAL Convention), adopted in 1965, is to achieve the most efficient maritime transport as possible, looking for smooth transit in ports of ships, cargo and passengers.

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    Testimonies of stranded seafarers

    As of July 2020, over 200,000 seafarers are stranded on ships and waiting to be repatriated, and about as many are stranded home and eagerly waiting to join ships and earn a living. Seafarers from around the world have agreed to share a glimpse of the challenges they face during the pandemic.

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