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World Maritime Day Celebration




World Maritime Day Celebration
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World Maritime Day is an official United Nations day of observance which celebrates the maritime industry's contribution - especially in shipping - to the world's economy and sustainable development.

The celebration emphasizes on the importance of shipping and other maritime activities especially the aspect of IMO's work. Each year, the World Maritime Day has its theme.

World Maritime Day is centered around the marine environment, as well as shipping safety and security in the maritime industry.

When is World Maritime Day celebrated?

World Maritime Day as designated by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) is celebrated on the last week of September each year. The event's date varies by year and member states are encouraged to choose their dates independently.

How is World Maritime Day Celebrated?

The event focuses on shipping activities, maritime safety and security and IMO's responsibilities in the marine environment. A special message from the secretary-general of the IMO is presented followed by paper presentations and discussions around the specific theme of the year.

Many countries in the world including the United Kingdom, United States, Australia, and Canada celebrates the event annually. Maritime organizations, unions and institutions hold special activities such as symposiums, luncheons, seminar, tour, etc. to mark the day.

World Maritime Day Celebration
Shipping carries 90% of world trade. Photo-credit: IMO

History of World Maritime Day

It was common believe that international regulations endorsed and followed by many countries could effectively improve maritime security and safety as well as boost world trade. As such, from 19th century till date many maritime treaties have been adopted.

A permanent regulatory body for maritime related affairs was proposed and the emergence of the United Nations (UN) birthed a convention to establish an organization called Inter-Governmental Maritime Consultative Organization (IMCO) at an international conference in Geneva in 1948.

The IMCO was saddled with the responsibility of developing and maintaining a comprehensive regulatory framework for shipping.

In 1982, the Inter-Governmental Maritime Consultative Organization (IMCO) was formally renamed "International Maritime Organization (IMO)". The IMO's tasks covers safety, environmental concerns, legal matters, technical co-operation, maritime security and the efficiency of shipping.

World Maritime Day was first held on March 17, 1978 to mark the 20th anniversary of the IMO Convention’s entry into force (1958).

The organization is made up of about 167 member states and three associate members. Membership includes nations of the world with interest in maritime affairs, as well as those in the shipping industry and coastal states with an interest in protecting the maritime environment and ecosystem.

World Maritime Day Dates

Day Year Theme
Thursday,  Sep 25 2014  
Thursday, Sep 24 2015  
Thursday, Sep 29   2016 Shipping: indispensable to the world
Thursday, Sep 28 2017 Connecting Ships, Ports and People
Thursday, Sep 27   2018  


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