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IMO Council Philippines reelectionThe Philippines has been reelected to the council of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) under Category C for the biennium 2020 to 2021.

The country since 1997 has been an active council member under Category C, members of which are states with special interest in maritime transport or navigation, and whose election to the council will ensure that major geographic areas of the world are all represented.

The members of the IMO Council were elected on November 29 during the 31st Session of the IMO Assembly at the IMO headquarters in London.

The Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA), in a statement, said the country’s reelection to the council, which is the executive organ of the IMO responsible for supervising the work of the organization, provides the Philippines the continued opportunity to participate strongly in the drafting of rules and regulations that promote a safe, green and sustainable global maritime industry.

The Philippines has also been a cooperative member of the IMO since 1964 as it observes and enforces the rules on safety and security of shipping, and implements procedures to prevent marine environmental pollution.

During the election, MARINA said the Philippine delegation emphasized the indispensable role of the country in forwarding the vision, mission and goals of the IMO as it is the major provider of maritime workforce to the international fleet.

Recognized as the world’s seafarers of choice, Filipino seafarers who are deployed to internationally flagged vessels are estimated to be at more than 440,000, comprising almost 30% of the total seafaring population, MARINA noted.

MARINA officer-in-charge Narciso A. Vingson, Jr. said the country will remain committed to serving the global maritime industry and contributing to the work of the IMO, especially by strengthening maritime labor and increasing representation at IMO meetings and programs by the maritime attaché post.

“Our competitive stance in the seafaring industry is brought about by the deeply-rooted trust and confidence which foreign principals or ship owners share towards Filipino maritime professionals, as they are well-educated, well-trained and well-equipped to move the world through shipping,” Vingson said during the opening session of the IMO Assembly.

“It is along these capacities and contributions that the Republic of the Philippines banners its membership in the IMO Council.”

Other states reelected under Category C were Bahamas, Belgium, Chile, Cyprus, Denmark, Egypt, Indonesia, Jamaica, Kenya, Kuwait, Malaysia, Malta, Mexico, Morocco, Peru, Singapore, South Africa, Thailand, and Turkey.

Member states elected under Category A, which has the largest interest in providing international shipping services, were China, Greece, Italy, Japan, Norway, Panama, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, United Kingdom, and the United States.

Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, India, the Netherlands, Spain and the United Arab Emirates, meanwhile, were elected under Category B, or states with the largest interest in international seaborne trade.

The newly elected council will meet, following the conclusion of the 31st Assembly, for its 123rd session on December 5 and will elect its chair and vice chair for the next biennium.

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