Members of INTERCARGO met in Athens last week for the Association's Annual General Meeting, Executive Committee and Technical Committee meetings, with record attendance observed to the satisfaction of all guest attendees and the organising international Association representing the dry bulk shipping sector. The last meetings in Athens had taken place in October 2019 and during that period INTERCARGO are proud to report that registered ships have increased by 50%, thus further strengthening the Association's global influence. INTERCARGO members with 3,300 ships now represent about one-third of the global dry bulk fleet tonnage.
High on the agenda were INTERCARGO quality initiatives; the IMO's Greenhouse Gas Strategy in relation to short, medium and long-term measures; future fuels; international environmental regulation including the EU-ETS; ship recycling; operational issues; digitalisation and cyber security; and the employment and welfare of seafarers. Once again, the primacy of safety was a common reference across all these topics during the Committees' deliberations.
INTERCARGO Chairman Dimitrios Fafalios observed: "INTERCARGO continues to make strong progress internationally despite the geopolitical turmoil. There have been significant developments within the IMO and Europe this year and we will continue to represent dry bulk shipping interests robustly at the highest levels.
Despite the COVID crisis from 2020, seafarers maintained global trade without disruption and were assigned "key worker" status. However, it is of grave concern that unfair detentions and treatment of seafarers continue in many jurisdictions, jeopardising their financial and mental health.
"The next decades will require monumental technological breakthroughs and the availability of well qualified and satisfied seafarers is of paramount importance," commented Mr Fafalios.
INTERCARGO fully supports all of the IMO's decarbonisation targets, subject to close collaboration of all supply chain stakeholders and safe/practical/equitable implementation measures.
The meetings were presided over by INTERCARGO Management Committee members, Chairman Dimitrios Fafalios, Vice Chairman Spyros Tarasis, Vice Chairman Uttam Kumar Jaiswal, Technical Committee Chairman Tom Keenan and Technical Committee Vice Chairman Dimitris Monioudis.