Partnership to promote sustainable maritime transport in Asia-Pacific

Source: IMO

The International Maritime Organization (IMO) has signed a partnership agreement with the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP). The agreement will help promote sustainable maritime transport through a range of capacity-building and knowledge partnership activities in the Asia-Pacific region.

The agreement brings together IMO, the United Nations maritime agency which sets global standards for safe, secure, efficient and environment-friendly international shipping, and ESCAP, the UN regional commission for the Asia-Pacific region, which provides a regional intergovernmental platform and think-tank, generating action-oriented knowledge, and by providing technical assistance and capacity-building services in support of national development objectives, regional agreements and the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed on Monday (12 September) by IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim and ESCAP Executive Secretary Armida Salsiah Alisjahbana. (Photos)

“This strategic partnership, combining IMO’s global mandate and outreach and ESCAP’s experience and expertise in supporting its regional partners, is expected to contribute a great deal to sustainable maritime transport and the implementation of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals,” said Secretary-General Lim.

As part of the United Nations family, IMO and ESCAP are actively working towards the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the associated SDGs. Most of the elements of the 2030 Agenda will only be realized with a sustainable transport sector supporting world trade and facilitating the global economy.

The parties intend to work together to support the following initiatives:

  • knowledge sharing;
  • intergovernmental cooperation;
  • capacity building;
  • joint resource mobilization; and
  • Strengthening UN-wide initiatives and programs;

ESCAP and IMO will provide activities under the following areas of mutual interest:

  • marine environment protection and climate change;
  • maritime transport facilitation in support of global and regional trade flows; and
  • maritime safety.

The agreement was signed at a ceremony in Bangkok, Thailand, during the IMO/ESCAP Thematic Solution Forum (TSF), taking place at the Global South-South Development (GSSD) Expo 2022.

The IMO/ESCAP TSF showcased the various initiatives of IMO and ESCAP related to South-South and Triangular Cooperation for sustainable maritime transport and a green recovery through partnerships, long-term projects and technical cooperation assistance.

The GSSD Expo is an annual event organised by the United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation (UNOSSC) to showcase evidence-based successful development solutions and initiatives, in collaboration with United Nations agencies and all other partners. The GSSD Expo 2022 is co-hosted by the Government of Thailand and ESCAP, from 12 to 14 September 2022 in Bangkok, Thailand.


The ESCAP/IMO Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed on Monday (12 September) by IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim (LEFT) and ESCAP Executive Secretary Armida Salsiah Alisjahbana (RIGHT). 

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