JIS News

Jamaica will know on (Nov. 23), whether it was successful in the bid for a seat on the Council of the International Maritime Organization (IMO), which is currently meeting in London.
Transport and Works Minister, Mike Henry, who is heading Jamaica’s delegation at the meeting, said it is important that the country is involved at the highest level of the international body.
“We are interested in the opportunities it (IMO) offers for the facilitation of investments and issues that relate to making our ports safe in line with all the rules and regulations, but if you are not involved at the point where all the rules and regulations are made, then you may end up inheriting things, which may be detrimental to your country,” Mr. Henry told JIS News.
He noted that, “if you are in at the beginning, you can predict, you can identify, you can isolate, you can promote and you can also advise the government of things and trends that are taking place, which are important.”
Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Dr. Alwin Hayles said that the maritime industry is one of the main pillars of growth for the country.
He said that Jamaica, being an island state, relies heavily on the maritime industry both in terms of cruise shipping and trade and transshipment. “Some 90 per cent of our trade goes through the port and we feel that if we are to really have growth in that industry, we need to be represented at the highest level within the IMO in order to have the recognition, and be where the decisions affecting the industry are made,” he argued.
The IMO is the United Nations specialized agency responsible for maritime safety, security, and pollution prevention, while facilitating technical co-operation.
Some 40 member states hold positions in three different categories: A, B and C. Jamaica is seeking election to category C, which includes those countries that have special interest in maritime transport or navigation.
Election to the Council will ensure a more equitable representation of all major geographic regions of the world.

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