Wednesday, September 25, 2013

World Maritime Day

World Maritime Day 2013

World maritime day 2013 theme is "Sustainable Development: IMO’s contribution beyond Rio+20" and 2012 theme is "IMO: One hundred years after the Titanic".

Every year the International Maritime Organization (IMO) observes World Maritime Day. The exact date is left for individual governments to decide but is normally celebrated during the last week of September. The day is considered to focus emphasize on the importance of shipping safety, maritime security and the marine environment and to devote on a particular aspect of IMO's work.

World Maritime Day and its Goal

World Maritime Day 2013 has been celebrated on Thursday, 24 September at the IMO's headquarters in London, England. The US Parallel Event was held on October 16-18, n New York City in the same year. Different other ports throughout the US conducted simultaneous events in their respective locations. The goal of World Maritime Day is to attract public, private, and government bodies to the many environmental concernswithin the maritime community to reduce the effects of climate change worldwide.

How People Celebrate World Maritime Day?

World Maritime Day emphasize on the significance of safe shipping, marine environment and maritime security along with a particular aspect of IMO's work. The day also flashes a special message from the IMO’s secretary-general, which is consolidated by a discussion paper on the selected subject in explanatory manner.

World Maritime Day is celebrated in various countries around the world, including Australia, the United Kingdom, Canada, and the United States. Many maritime organizations and institutions conduct special activities and events to celebrate this special day. These activities and events vary from luncheons to symposiums, including school lessons that focus on the day. Some classes also organize a trip to a maritime museum so that students may know the significance of the maritime industry in shipping world history as well as its significance in world trade.

Background of World Maritime Day

It has been considered by the people that international regulations that are followed by many countries worldwide, could improve marine safety, hence many treaties have been signed and adopted since the 19th century. Various countries endorsed for a permanent international body to be floated to advocate maritime safety more effectively but it was not until the UN was established that these concepts were realized. An international conference in Geneva in the year 1948 established the IMO, a specialized UN agency that promotes and manages a huge regulatory framework for shipping.

The IMO’s earlier name was the Inter-Governmental Maritime Consultative Organization (IMCO) but it got a facelift in 1982 and was renamed to IMO. The IMO emphasizes on areas such as safety,environmental concerns, technical co-operation, legal matters, maritime security and the proficiency ofshipping.

World Maritime Day was first observed on March 17, 1978 to represent the date of the IMO Convention’s entry into force in the year 1958. At that time, there were 21 member states in the organization. Now it has reached a count of 167 member states and three associate members. This membership includes all the countries of the world with a concern in maritime affairs, along with those engaged in the shipping industry and coastal states with a concern to protect their maritime environment.

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