UAE Highlights its Maritime Contributions and Competencies at The IMO
Presenting its profile for category B candidacy in the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) Council at the organisation’s focus group in London, the UAE’s delegation has displayed very powerful contributions made to the sector over the years, that have influenced the industry globally.
Boasting a rich maritime history, and a coastline of 1650 kms, the UAE’s strategic location at the crossroads of global shipping routes has enabled it to become a central maritime hub in the world.
Besides its natural endowments, the country has strived to achieve continuous development in the maritime industry, which is a key pillar of its national economy, contributing more than $25 billion to its GDP.
HE Hassan Mohamed Juma Al-Mansoori, Undersecretary for the Infrastructure and Transport Sector at the Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure said: “We are proud of our achievements made over the years.
"The UAE’s practices, decisions and legislations have helped develop the maritime sector, enhanced its safety standards, and contributed to protecting the marine environment globally. The UAE was ranked 3rd globally in transport services trade and in Bunker Supply Index.
"It ranked fifth globally as a key competitive maritime hub. The UAE’s ports rank among the top 10 internationally in the volume of container handling."
Aiding to the growth of the global maritime sector
As a centre for maritime excellence, the UAE has always capitalised on the sector’s success to empower economic prosperity.
With its impeccable and well-balanced approach in dealing with maritime issues as a flag, port and coastal state, the UAE has become one of the most prominent countries supporting the IMO.
It was first elected as a permanent member of the council under category B in 2017 and has maintained this status since.
Women’s and seafarers’ rights
The UAE’s seaborne trade and transhipment efforts cater to about two billion people from China, India, and the Gulf States to Eurasia and all the way to Eastern Europe. The country is committed to upholding its responsibility in establishing a sustainable platform for sharing knowledge and expertise among maritime nations and administrations on best practices.
Besides developing the sector from a strategic point of view, the UAE has gone the extra mile to ensure the rights of seafarers and empower more females to take active part in the industry.
HE Hessa Al Malek, Advisor to the Minister for Maritime Transport Affairs, UAE Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure said: “As a signatory of the MLC convention, the UAE takes proactive measures to safeguard the interests of seafarers, aiming to improve the quality of life for seafarers.
"We were one of the first IMO Member States to designate seafarers as key workers during the Covid-19 pandemic, and supported seafarers by facilitating safe ship crew change, administering vaccinations, and providing them access to medical care.
“We have also been strongly championing women’s rights in the maritime sector. The UAE is currently chairing the Arab Women in the Maritime Association (AWIMA), which is working with the IMO’s Technical Cooperation Programme (ITCP) to support women in the maritime sector."
Mohammed Khamis Al Kaabi, UAE Permanent Representative at the IMO said: “Through its membership in the International Maritime Organization, the UAE seeks to continue contributing to developing strategies, policies, agreements and setting standards regulating the maritime sector.
"The UAE is a very active contributor to the IMO’s activities through its positive and effective engagement and participation in all the works of the Assembly, Council, main technical committees, sub-committees, and related working groups.”
The UAE is a founding member of the Riyadh Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to achieve safe, secure and efficient shipping in the maritime jurisdictions in the Arabian Gulf.
Being a flag state, the UAE ranks 21st worldwide in terms of fleet size. It has more than 20 major ports spread across from Fujairah in the East to Abu Dhabi in Southwest on the UAE coast.