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Spain is elected to preside over the Council of the International Maritime Organisation

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Spain will preside, for the first time, the Council of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO), the executive body of this entity, which directs the designs of the maritime sector at a global level.

This has been decided by an absolute majority, in the first round, the 40 members of this body, which represents the 175 states participating in the General Assembly, during the 126th session that ends today in London.

The new President of the IMO Council, Víctor Jiménez Fernández, Transport Counsellor at the Spanish Embassy in London and Alternate Permanent Representative of our country to the IMO since 2016, is preceded by more than 20 years of experience in the maritime sector and almost as many in management tasks.

Jiménez has received the news with satisfaction and has expressed his permanent commitment to the principles and strategies defended by the IMO and to the challenges that must be faced globally in the maritime sector in the post-COVID era. Among them, decarbonisation, the enhancement of seafarers or the promotion of new technologies that improve sustainability in the marine environment. “For our country, this presidency represents an enormous endorsement and recognition of the work carried out over many years within this Organisation,” he stated.

The President of the Council is an executive position that directs, moderates and makes decisions based on the opinions expressed by all the member states. This is a complex task, bearing in mind that decisions are made by consensus.

The general director of the Merchant Navy, Benito Núñez, congratulated the new President of the Council and stressed that this election will mean improving the visibility of Spain in the international maritime sector and participating in the front row of the challenges and projects that will affect maritime transport in the next years.

Delivered to the maritime sector

Víctor Jiménez began his career at the Ministry of Transport, Mobility and Urban Agenda (Mitma) in 2004 as a maritime safety inspector in the Captaincy of Algeciras, his city of origin and, before leaving for London, he took charge for 3 years of the General Subdirectorate of Maritime Safety, Pollution and Inspection of the General Directorate of the Merchant Marine.

In addition, he has extensive teaching experience as a professor of the master’s degree in Port Management and Logistics at the University of Cádiz and the master’s degree in Maritime Law taught by the Spanish Maritime Institute but, above all, he has demonstrated in recent years his involvement with the maritime sector at the international level, as head of the Spanish delegation both in the Assembly, as in the Council and the committees, subcommittees and working groups related to the protection of the marine environment, maritime safety or regulations, among others, existing in this Organization International. This involvement has become much more visible and intense, if possible, since the beginning of the pandemic.

It also represents Spain before the IOPC Funds (International Funds for Compensation for Damages Due to Hydrocarbon Pollution) and the IMSO (International Organisation for Mobile Satellite Telecommunications). In addition, he currently chairs the group of common interest in the decarbonisation of maritime transport of the International Transport Forum.

A milestone for our country

Despite the fact that Spain is a historical and prominent member of the IMO since 1962, this is the first time that it has presided over the IMO Council, the executive body and the one responsible to the Assembly for the supervision of the work carried out. out across the board.

The Council is in charge of developing all the powers of the Assembly, which meets every two years: examines the projects of the Organization’s work program and budget, receives reports and proposals from committees and other bodies, appoints the Secretary General IMO, enters into agreements with other organizations.

The vice-presidency of the Council, on the other hand, has fallen to the general director of the Merchant Marine of Morocco, Amane Fethallah.

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