Australia Re-elected to International Maritime Organization

Media Release

WT039/2013

02 December 2013

Over the weekend Australia was re-elected to the Council of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) reflecting our key role in international shipping.

Australia was elected in Category C of the IMO Council at the IMO's 28th Assembly in London, which meets every two years. Category C consists of ‘20 IMO Members with a special interest in maritime transport or navigation, and whose election will ensure the representation of all major geographic areas of the world’.

“Australia has long demonstrated its commitment to deep engagement in the Indian Ocean and Asia-Pacific regions,” Mr Truss said.

“The election also reaffirms Australia's commitment to the IMO and its important work in international maritime safety, security and pollution prevention.”

Australia is a founding member of the IMO and an elected member of Council since 1985 and, prior to that, from 1959 to 1975. Australia is one of the few countries to have been represented on the IMO Council for more than 40 years.

“Australia is a significant maritime nation,” Mr Truss added. “We are the world's largest island nation and responsible for 16 million square kilometres of ocean under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.

“Australia's maritime zone includes 12,000 islands and covers all five of the world's ocean temperature zones, from tropical to polar. Our marine environment is also home to spectacular biodiversity, much of it endemic to Australian waters.

“And our economic prosperity is reliant on safe, secure and efficient international shipping.

“The Australian Government aims to ensure that the thousands of international vessels visiting Australian ports each year are seaworthy, have competent crews and can safely navigate their way through our pristine marine areas, such as the Great Barrier Reef.”

The IMO is a specialised agency of the United Nations with responsibility for the safety and security of shipping and the prevention of marine pollution by ships. For more information visit: www.imo.org.