Celebrating World Maritime Day
25 September 2014
Across the globe, the international maritime transport industry is today celebrating World Maritime Day and the industry's contribution to the worldwide economies.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development Warren Truss said maritime transport is invaluable to the global community.
“World Maritime Day is an annual celebration to recognise the hard work of more than 1.5 million seafarers worldwide, including more than 10,000 seafarers—almost half of whom are Navy personnel—employed in Australia,” Mr Truss said.
“As the world's largest island nation, Australia is particularly reliant on shipping. Ships transport more than 99.5 per cent of Australia's international trade, by volume. In 2012–13, more than 4,900 cargo ships from overseas made almost 14,000 visits to Australian ports.”
Mr Truss said the Australian Government was committed to delivering reforms to remove red tape burdens in the local maritime sector and to stimulate the coastal shipping industry.
“Efficient coastal shipping is a necessity for this country—and will reduce costs for shippers and their customers,” he said.
“An Australian Government options paper on improving coastal shipping regulation shows that, without action, coastal shipping will continue to lose market share to road and rail, adding to congestion in our cities and causing additional wear and tear on infrastructure.
“World Maritime Day is a day to reflect on the international maritime industry's contribution to effective global conventions—indeed this year's theme is the effective implementation of these conventions—and to also reflect on the importance of our local shipping industry.”
World Maritime Day is an International Maritime Organization (IMO) initiative. Australia is a key player at the IMO, having served on its governing Council for over 40 years.