PH campaigns for re-election to IMO Council

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PH campaigns for re-election to IMO Council
Transportation Secretary Jaime Bautista campaigning for the Philippines' re-election to the International Maritime Organization council in London. Photo from the Department of Transportation.
  • The Philippines is seeking re-election to the International Maritime Organization Council at the 33rd International Maritime Organization Assembly in London
  • Re-election under Category C would enable the transport department to advance the maritime industry, focusing on progress, safety, sustainability, environmental responsibility, and a future-ready green marine sector, according to Transportation Secretary Jaime Bautista
  • The IMO is set to elect 40 Council members on December 1

The Philippines is seeking re-election to the International Maritime Organization (IMO) Council during the 33rd IMO Assembly in London.

Campaigning for the Philippines is Transportation Secretary Jaime Bautista who said the country’s re-election to the IMO under Category C for the 2024-2025 biennium will facilitate the Department of Transportation’s efforts to advance the maritime industry. The goal is to transform the sector into a progressive, safe, sustainable, environmentally sound, and future-ready green marine industry.

“We believe our re-election will allow us to continue contributing to the global maritime industry, not just as a top provider of top-caliber seafarers but also at promoting safe and secure shipping operations, geared towards growth, modernization, resiliency and sustainability,” Bautista said in a statement.

The Philippines is the first member-state recognized by the International Labor Organization to fully comply with the international requirements of the Seafarers Identity Documents Convention of 2003.

During the London assembly, Bautista outlined the Philippines’ 10-year Maritime Industry Development Plan, which includes strengthening the country’s shipbuilding industry. Presently, the Philippines ranks as the world’s fifth-largest shipbuilding nation.

As of 2021, the Philippines recorded a total of 116 shipyards and locally constructed 569 ships for domestic use with at least 47 ships exported in 2022.

The transport chief also cited the European Commission’s recent decision to continue recognizing the certificates of training issued to Filipino seafarers. He emphasized the need to “re-skill Filipino seafarers with upscaled programs.”

READ: EC extends recognition of PH seafarers’ certificate

The IMO Assembly serves as the highest governing body of the organization. Since 1997, the Philippines has been an active council member under Category C, representing states with special interests in maritime transport or navigation. Membership in the IMO Council provides the privilege to contribute to policy formulation and decision-making processes, along with voting rights.

The election for IMO Council members is scheduled during the 33rd session of the IMO Assembly from November 27 to December 6. The IMO has received a total of 45 candidatures to date, with 24 for Category C, 11 for Category A (states with the largest interest in providing international shipping services), and 10 for Category B (states with the largest interest in international seaborne trade).

The election, set for December 1, will determine the 40 members of the Council.