The International Association of Ports and Harbors (IAPH) and IMO have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for future cooperation in the areas of climate and energy, data collaboration and risk and resilience of ship-to-shore operations.

The MoU was signed (17 July) by Captain K. Subramaniam, President of the International Association of Ports and Harbors (IAPH), and Mr. Kitack Lim, Secretary-General, IMO. They were accompanied by Dr. Patrick Verhoeven, Managing Director of IAPH. The signing ceremony took place in the sidelines of the meeting of the IMO council (C 129, meeting 17-21 July).

The objective of this strategic partnership between IMO and IAPH is to assist developing countries, as identified jointly by both parties, to strengthen their maritime and port sectors and facilitate the adoption of sustainable maritime transport systems and practices.

The Memorandum will utilize IMO's experience as the United Nations Specialized Agency responsible for setting global standards for the safety, security and facilitation of international shipping and the prevention of pollution by ships, in collaboration with IAPH's best practices and knowledge of the most advanced and sophisticated ports to achieve sustainable, inclusive and equitable development.

Improving the capacities and infrastructures in ports in developing countries, in particular in least developed countries (LDCs) and Small Island Developing States (SIDS), is seen as critical in achieving the updated goals set out in the revised 2023 IMO GHG Strategy, adopted on 7 July. 

The MoU is in line with the IMO MEPC resolution 366 (79) that invites IMO Member States to encourage voluntary cooperation between the port and shipping sectors to contribute to reducing GHG emissions from ships.