Liberia has again been reelected to the Council of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) for the 2018-2019 biennium. The election was held as part of the 30th session of the Assembly of IMO, convening in London.
An IMO dispatch said Liberia has consistently maintained a Category ‘C’ seat on the IMO Council since 2012. The Council is the Executive Organ of IMO that takes decision in the absence of Assembly. Between sessions of the Assembly, the Council coordinates all activities of the Organs of the Organization.
Other than Liberia, other African countries elected to the Council are South Africa, Kenya, Morocco, and Egypt.
Liberia’s Permanent Representative to the IMO, Isaac Jackson, who spoke shortly after the election, expressed gratitude to member states of the IMO for the vote of confidence in Liberia’s leadership in this global organization, which he described as a very wise decision.
He said, “the sheer size of the tonnage under Liberia’s flag points at our deep interest in the maritime industry, thus our determination to play a role in the more substantive aspect of guiding the IMO.”
The Liberian-flag fleet currently comprises 4,170 ships aggregating more than 150M gross tons, representing 12 percent of the global ocean going fleet. Jackson said, working along with its Corporate Registry Agency, Liberian-flagged vessels meet the highest level of safety, security and environmental standards promulgated by the IMO.
Earlier making the case for Liberia’s election, the Commissioner of the Liberia Maritime Authority (MA), Dr. James Kollie, recalled Liberia’s “rich history in facilitating the international maritime industry through a favorable framework within which ship-owners compete in global trade and commerce.”
He informed the conference that, “Liberia has consistently played both far-reaching and pivotal roles in regulating the public dimension of uniform global maritime transport standards.”
Dr. Kollie also cited the well-being of seafarers, reminding the conference of Liberia’s principal role in ratifying the International Labor Organization, Maritime Labor Convention (MLC), 2006, better known as the “fourth pillar” of the international regulatory regime for quality shipping, which complements the key Conventions of the IMO and provides comprehensive rights and protection at work for the world’s more than 1.2 million seafarers.
Liberia is represented at the 30th Assembly of the IMO by Deputy Foreign Minister Elias Shoniyin; Maritime Commissioner James Kollie; Chairlady, Board of Directors, Cllr. F. Jauh Lawson; Liberia’s Charge d’Affaires at the Court of St. James, Ibrahim Nyei; Liberia’s Permanent Maritime Representative, Isaac Jackson; and Nya Gbaintor.