Sub-Committee on Implementation of IMO Instruments (III 8) - opening remarks


(25 to 29 July 2022)

Excellencies, distinguished delegates and observers, good morning, good afternoon, and good evening.

It is a great pleasure for me to welcome you to the eighth session of the Sub‑Committee on Implementation of IMO Instruments.

This week marks the end of what has been an exceptionally busy and challenging period for the Organization and especially for you, distinguished delegates. I am sure that all of us are looking forward to our well-deserved summer holidays. However, there is still important work remaining for you to consider during this week.

Over the last two years, the Organization has taken numerous initiatives aimed at reducing the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the maritime sector, in particular, on seafarers. We will continue to work with governments, industry and other international organizations to ensure that any recent positive trends are sustained and to examine the lessons learned for shipping.

As you may be aware, the Council, at its 127th session earlier this month, endorsed my proposal regarding next year's World Maritime Theme: "MARPOL at 50 - Our commitment goes on". This theme will provide the opportunity for the maritime community to highlight the relevance and importance of the MARPOL treaty now and into the future. The theme reflects the organization's long history of protecting the environment from the impact of shipping via a robust regulatory framework and emphasizes its ongoing commitment to this important work.

I would also like to highlight decision of the Council, for in-person meetings to resume at IMO Headquarters from September 2022. The Council also generally agreed to the use of hybrid meeting capabilities to supplement in-person meetings from September for a trial period of one year.

Now, in terms of the agenda of the meeting, your Sub‑Committee is expected to commence the preparation of a series of draft Assembly resolutions, on matters related to port State control, survey and certification, and obligations under instruments relevant to the IMO Instruments Implementation Code, with a view to adoption at A 33.

Analysis of marine safety investigation reports is an important area of activities of your Sub‑Committee. The Secretariat, over the last year, took several initiatives to enhance the reporting rate of marine safety investigations and assist Member States in this respect.

A more advanced data analysis of casualty and incident data, together with other relevant data sources is the next milestone that the Organization could hugely benefit from the analysis of relevant data, identification of trends and development of risk-based recommendations to inform the Organization's regulatory work and policy development.

Building on important insights on the level of implementation of the mandatory IMO instruments globally, gained from the analysis of audit outcomes under the IMO Member State Audit Scheme (IMSAS), at this session you will be further developing guidance to assist Member States in the implementation of the III Code.

At the same time, the outcome of the analysis of four consolidated audit summary reports (CASR) reviewed by III 7 has been endorsed by the Committees and will be reported back to the Council, for the first time, including feedback from audits for further development of technical assistance to Member States.

With regard to your work on updating the Procedures for PSC, after the significant decisions at the last MEPC concerning the short-term GHG reduction measures, you are called to provide expert input to foster harmonized enforcement procedures across all PSC regimes. The harmonization of PSC activities is essential in ensuring that shipping remains efficient and sustainable. In this regard, IMO is determined to continue and strengthen this engagement with PSC regimes.

This week your Sub-Committee is expected to commence work on developing guidance on assessments and applications of remote surveys, ISM Code audits and ISPS Code verifications. The guidance will assist Member States to overcome some of these challenges and enhance their capabilities.

Distinguished delegates,

You have a highly diverse set of subjects on your agenda, but I am confident that with the usual IMO spirit of cooperation you will prevail.

I have no doubt that your Chair, Ms. Claudia Grant of Jamaica and Vice-Chair, Mr. Marek Rauk of Estonia will ensure that you make significant progress at this session.

Thank you.