IMO-UNEP-Norway Zero and Low Emission Innovation Forum

IMO-UNEP-Norway Zero and Low Emission Innovation Forum
27 September 2021 (12:00 p.m. BST)
Keynote speech by Kitack Lim, Secretary-General,
International Maritime Organization (IMO)


Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen,

It gives me great pleasure to welcome you to this important event jointly organized by IMO and United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), with the support of the Government of Norway.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank His Excellency, Minister Sveinung Rotevatn, Minister of Climate and Environment of Norway and express my appreciation to the Government of Norway for the continuing support for IMO’s technical cooperation programmes and, in particular for the financial support extended to organize this very timely and innovative Forum. 

The IMO-UNEP-Norway Zero and Low Emission Innovation Forum is a continuance of IMO's efforts to bring together international policy makers, maritime, climate change and environmental administrations, technology developers, maritime industry, ports and finance experts, to catalyse collaboration and innovation for climate action in maritime sector.

With the involvement of UNEP, these efforts have been now further strengthened. I am looking forward to further cooperation and exchange in this area and particularly welcome here today Ms Inger Andersen, the Executive Director of UNEP.

We must continue to work towards common goals and ensure together that the environment is stabilized by accelerating the decarbonisation of the maritime sector and achieving the goals of the IMO GHG Initial Strategy.

The energy transition of the maritime industry will require new technologies, low- and zero carbon (renewable) alternative fuels and infrastructure to support low- and zero-carbon shipping. Innovation core to its success.

Regulation drives innovation. Through the regulations for the global shipping industry which IMO adopts, we are striving to improve the energy efficiency of international shipping and reduce GHG emissions. But we need to do even more and do it in an inclusive manner.

IMO has set "New technologies for greener shipping" as the World Maritime theme for 2022, reflecting on the urgent need to support a green transition of the maritime sector into a sustainable future, while leaving no one behind.

The IMO-UNEP-Norway Zero and Low Emission Innovation Forum is a recognition of this need. This forum is a novel forum to promote further cooperation, exchange of best practices and to learn from other sectors where a similar transition has taken place on the global scale. Throughout these three days, you will hear about emerging innovation models, financial solutions, how lessons are shared and how this transition has been supported in other sectors through an inclusive innovation journey which leaves no one behind. 

Through a combination of presentations, break-out groups and discussion, successful models of inclusive innovation and financial solutions will be showcased. From this, we can identify solutions that may be potentially replicated, taking into account maritime decarbonisation challenges faced by developing countries and in particular the Small Island Developing States and Least Developed Countries. 

This is a very timely Forum and as such innovative also in its nature. It is a new form of cooperation for IMO, a new partnership with UNEP and a new form of dialogue, which I would like to encourage further. 

I wish you all a very productive meeting.
Thank you.