As the biennial conference of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) ends this week in its headquarters in London, United Kingdom, its Assembly has elected no fewer than 40 member nations as members of its Council. Those elected will serve in the council for another two years; that is 2014 to 2015.
Under category A, ten States with the largest interest in providing international shipping services were elected. They are China, Greece, Italy, Japan, Norway, Panama, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, United Kingdom, and the United States of America (USA).
In category B, 10 states with the largest interest in international seaborne trade were elected. They are Argentina, Bangladesh, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, India, Netherlands, Spain, and Sweden.
Similarly, in category C, 20 states not elected under category A or B which have special interests in maritime transport or navigation and whose election to the Council will ensure the representation of all major geographic areas of the world were elected.
They are Australia, Bahamas, Belgium, Chile, Cyprus, Denmark, Indonesia, Jamaica, Kenya, Liberia, Malaysia, Malta, Mexico, Morocco, Peru, Philippines, Singapore, South Africa, Thailand, and Turkey.
The council is the executive organ of IMO and is responsible, under the Assembly, for supervising the work of the United Nations specialised agency. Between sessions of the Assembly, the Council performs all the functions of the Assembly, except that of making recommendations to Governments on maritime safety and pollution prevention.
The newly elected Council will meet, following the conclusion of the 28th Assembly, for its 111th session and will elect its Chairman and Vice-Chairman for the next biennium.
The Assembly is IMO’s highest governing body. All 170 member states and three associate members are entitled to attend, as are the intergovernmental organisations with which agreements of co operation have been concluded, and non-governmental organisations in consultative status with IMO.
The Assembly normally meets once every two years in regular session. It is responsible for approving the work programme, voting budget and determining the financial arrangements of the UN specialised agency.