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High Commissioner Bethel and BMA Join IMO Secretary General in Celebrating World Maritime Day

(Photo: IMO)

The International Maritime Organization celebrated World Maritime Day 2014 and marked the occasion with a diplomatic reception at its London headquarters. His Excellency High Commissioner Eldred Bethel and Bahamas Maritime Authority Director Mr Davy Rolle at the event congratulated Secretary General Koji Sekimizu for the work of the IMO.

High Commissioner Bethel who is the diplomatic head responsible for the Bahamas Maritime Authority London said that The Bahamas continues to be committed to the success of the International Maritime Organization as its work in international shipping is unparalleled and continues to have an impact on countries all over the world.


“We are one of the largest financial contributors to the International Maritime Organization with a contribution from The Bahamas averaging over some one million pounds per annum. Our strong representation in the IMO is proof of commitment to ensure that our governmental representation covers key areas including diplomatic and technical issues. Further to this, we also play a significant role in shaping the legal and administrative regulations produced by the IMO,” said High Commissioner Bethel.


(IMO World Maritime Day reception: Mrs Dawne Bethel, Secretary General Koji Sekimizu and His Excellency Eldred Bethel at the IMO World Maritime Day reception held at IMO headquarters.)

Director of Bahamas Maritime Authority, Mr Davy Rolle stated that The Bahamas is proud and honoured to attend the celebrations of World Maritime Day as it remains committed to the organization's goal of "safe and secure shipping on clean seas" and its prompt and full payment of its annual assessment.


“As a flag State with a fleet which ranges over every sector of maritime operations the Bahamas is very aware of its responsibilities as a Maritime Regulator and continues to advocate for regulatory provisions which are proportionate, targeted, achievable and implementable. The Bahamas is particularly pleased to support the Secretary-General in this year when the theme is "IMO conventions: effective implementation" and the opportunity it raises to examine the challenges to implementation faced by all States but particularly Small Island Developing States such as the Bahamas,” said Mr Rolle.



(Bahamas Maritime Authority Deputy Director Captain Dwayne Hutchinson, Secretary General Koji Sekimizu and Bahamas Maritime Authority Director Mr Davy Rolle.)


World Maritime Day is celebrated annually; stakeholders use the time to give attention to the importance of shipping safety, maritime security, the maritime environment and emphasize an area of the IMO’s work. This year Secretary General Koji Sekimizu focused on the theme ‘IMO Conventions: Effective Implementation.’


“IMO has over the years built up an enviable track record for developing and adopting new international conventions, some 53 in all, aimed at ensuring that international shipping keeps up to date with technical and technological advances in safety, that it addresses the ever increasing number of environmental challenges and concerns of Member Governments and that it facilitates the payment of compensation in appropriate situations. Nevertheless, adoption alone is only the first step of the treaty-making process; to be effective, adoption must be followed by entry into force and, subsequently, widespread implementation of the measures put in place by the conventions,” stated Secretary General Sekimizu.



In his World Maritime Day address, United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon stated that for more than 50 years, international conventions developed by the IMO have made global shipping progressively safer, more secure and more environment-friendly. 


At a time when the world is beset by conflict and crisis, it is easy to forget that, day in and day out, the international shipping industry works quietly and efficiently to keep the wheels of global trade in motion and ensure the timely delivery of the goods and commodities on which we all rely,"said the United Nations Secretary General.