PH reelected to IMO Council

December 2, 2023 Jun I. Legaspi 227 views

THE Philippines was re-elected to the International Maritime Organization (IMO) Council at the close of the recent 33rd IMO Assembly in London.

The Philippines received the seventh most number of votes out of the 20 countries that were elected Friday, Dec. 1 (London time) to the Council under Category C for the year 2024-2025 biennium – the highest number of votes received by the Philippines since becoming IMO Council member in 1989.

A total of 136 IMO member-states attended the Assembly and voted for the Philippines to remain in the Council.

The Philippines served as president of the IMO Assembly 33rd meeting. The country became an IMO member in 1964.

The Filipino delegation was led by Transport Secretary Jaime J. Bautista and Philippine Ambassador to the United Kingdom Teodoro Locsin, Jr.

Sec. Bautista said, “We are grateful for the support of representatives from the Transport Department, Foreign Affairs Department, Philippine embassy in the United Kingdom, MARINA, Philippine Coast Guard, Philippine Ports Authority and other private sector representatives.”

The Philippines’ re-election is a testament to the crucial role the Philippines plays in global shipping and in the international maritime community.

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

On the sidelines of the assembly, Secretary Bautista signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Saudi Arabia (KSA) Transport Minister Saleh Al Jasser on the continued recognition by KSA on the training certificates of Filipino seafarers.

The MOU will generate additional employment opportunities for Filipino seafarer and promote platforms for technical cooperation.

After signing the MOU, Sec. Bautista “expressed the deepest gratitude” of the Philippine government “to the government of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for their continuous trust and confidence to Filipino seafarers and in the Philippine maritime administration.”

In a related development, Sec. Bautista met with ministers of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) to discuss pertinent issues, including the progress and development of transport systems in their respective countries.