The IMO sets global standards for maritime safety and marine environmental protection. Consequently, the Danish shipping industry benefits greatly from a strong Danish presence in the IMO. It is paramount to be elected for the Council which functions as the IMO’s governing board and decides on the IMO strategy and budget among other things.
The electoral campaign has been tougher than usual. This time, 46 countries had presented their candidature for the 40 Council seats, and thus there has been a contested election in two out of three of the election categories. This was also the case for category C in which Denmark was running.
Director-General of the Danish Maritime Authority Andreas Nordseth:
”I am pleased that Denmark has been re-elected as a member of the IMO Council with such great support. With the world’s 14th largest register of shipping, it is important for us to be represented at the Organization’s highest level and to help ensure that the IMO remains the global centre for the regulation of shipping. The fact that Denmark has been re-elected is a great recognition of our contribution to the IMO. We will use our seat to continue our efforts to create the best possible framework conditions for quality shipping globally.”
Denmark is a strong maritime nation and has also considerable interests as a coastal State and, with a total gross tonnage of 61.2 million, Danish shipowners are currently the world’s 7th largest operator of gross tonnage.
In the IMO, Denmark will continue to work for issues such as:
- An IMO strategy for reducing greenhouse gas emissions from ships.
- Effective enforcement and ensuring a global level playing field for the shipping industry
- Future-proof and digitalization-ready regulation
The new Council for the 2018-19 biennium
In category A, in which there was no contested election, the following countries were elected to the Council: China, Greece, Italy, Japan, Norway, Panama, the Russian Federation, the United Kingdom, the Republic of Korea, and the United States.
Category B has not usually had contested elections. However, Australia and the United Arab Emirates challenged this group making it 12 candidates for 10 seats. Both countries succeeded in getting a seat on the Council along with Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, India, the Netherlands, Spain and Sweden. Argentina and Bangladesh lost their Council seats.
In group C, the following countries won a seat along with Denmark: the Bahamas, Belgium, Chile, Cyprus, Egypt, the Philippines, Indonesia, Jamaica, Kenya, Liberia, Malaysia, Malta, Mexico, Morocco, Peru, Singapore, South Africa, Thailand, and Turkey. The challengers Algeria, Antigua and Barbuda, Nigeria, and Saudi Arabia did not gain seats in the Council.
Council elections are held every second year during the IMO Assembly. Denmark was elected for the first time in 2001 and has been re-elected since then.
The IMO is the United Nations’ specialised agency for shipping, tasked with setting global standards for maritime safety and marine environmental protection. The IMO has 172 Member States, 40 of which serve in the IMO Council, which could be considered as the governing board of the Organization.