A regional workshop has been held in Guatemala to share with leaders of the Central America and Dominican Republic maritime administrations (ROCRAM-CA) the latest developments in the thematic priorities being established as part of the organization’s pilot programme.

The week-long meeting (14-18 November), hosted by the Maritime Authority of Guatemala in Guatemala City, was organised by IMO and the Central American Commission on Maritime Transport (Comisión Centroamericana para Transporte Marítimo (COCATRAM)).

The latest thematic priorities are due to be developed in 2023 and will include the London Protocol and the London Convention (more information here). The first of the pilot programme’s themes - others include search and rescue and greenhouse gas emissions - were introduced in 2020. Each one runs for a period of three or four years. The aim is to build regional capacity to comply with international rules and standards on maritime safety and the prevention of maritime pollution.

Participants in Guatemala also received reports on other themes already established under the scheme, namely search and rescue, the STCW Convention, the ISM Code, maritime legislation and the FAL Convention. And the event provided maritime administrations with the opportunity to exchange information and to identify technical assistance priorities for the year 2023.

Two IMO consultants are working with the region's maritime authorities to develop a strategic approach for the area. It will be presented to IMO in December this year.

During the closing ceremony, the Vice Minister of the Navy of the Ministry of Defence of Guatemala presented IMO with a copy of the instrument of accession of the International Convention on Maritime Search and Rescue, 1979. It was signed by the President of the Republic of Guatemala on 25 May 2022.