24 Sept 2020 - The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated the importance of shipping as the most reliable, efficient and cost-effective method of transporting goods internationally. Shipping remains the leading facilitator of the global economy, carrying more than 80% of global trade, said IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim in his World Maritime Day message.
"Therefore, shipping and maritime will be at the heart of the economic recovery and future sustainable growth far into the future, both at sea and ashore, supporting an inclusive and resilient economy to underpin the achievement of the sustainable development goals. 'Sustainable Shipping for a Sustainable Planet', our theme for 2020 couldn't be more relevant now and for years to come," Secretary-General Lim said.
"In the post-COVID world, much focus will be directed at the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the 17 Sustainable Development Goals adopted by all UN Member States in 2015. These goals are as relevant as ever, and shipping is essential for sustainable development. The 2030 Agenda will only be realized with a sustainable transport sector supporting world trade and facilitating the global economy," Secretary-General Lim added.
The role of sustainable shipping for a sustainable planet will be highlighted during an IMO-hosted online event on 24 September.
At a separate event held on the margins of the UN General Assembly on World Maritime Day, Mr. Lim will highlight the important role of shipping and put a spotlight on the humanitarian crisis faced by seafarers who are stranded at sea due to travel restrictions imposed by governments to contain the spread of the virus. Mr. Lim will warn that seafarers should not be the collateral victims in this pandemic. He will underline that Governments must act in a coordinated manner to recognize seafarers as key workers, exempting them from travel restrictions, and implement the recommended framework of protocols for safe crew changes"
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