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Africa’s maritime experts to meet in Kenya

The cream of Africa’s maritime experts and registrars of ships will converge in Mombasa, Kenya, 3-5 October 2012 to launch a master plan for the continent’s re-entry into the global shipping industry so it can assume its rightful place in the Comity of maritime nations.

The conference, which will be declared opened by Kenya’s Minister for Transport Amos Kimunya, is being organised by Kenya Maritime Authority (KMA), South Africa Maritime Safety Authority (SAMSA) and African Ship Owners Association (ASA) with facilitation by the
International Maritime Organization (IMO).

The conference is a response to the continents unimpressive share of global investments in the maritime industry, despite its significant contribution to global maritime cargo and the renewed desire for strategic take-off in the maritime sector as captured in the “African Maritime Transport Charter”.

Apart from drawing up a Master Plan on reviving Africa’s Maritime Agenda, the meeting will also call for the strengthening of cooperation at regional and continental levels through regular consultations where best practices can be shared among the stakeholders.

The conference will provide an interactive platform for discussion, sharing of experience and cross-fertilization of ideas on how best to enable a paradigm shift on the future of African maritime industry.

It will also provide an unprecedented opportunity for Maritime Authorities to execute joint articulation and implementation of a continental approach in developing among others an overall investment capacity, maritime governance structures and participation in ocean transport within the continent.

The deliberations will focus on among other issues, maritime policy and regulation, development of country maritime profiles and integrated technical cooperation, as well as cross cutting concerns of cargo owners and ship owners.

Focus will also centre on ships construction yards, oil and gas exploration, port operations, marine environment, marine tourism and funding of maritime investments in Africa.

The Inaugural African Maritime Authorities meeting, which will be attended by the Chief Executive Officers from over 30 countries, is sequel to a resolution
reached in Dalian, China, in October 2012 at a workshop organized by the Chinese Government for Heads of Maritime Administrations.

That workshop enjoined participants to hold joint regular meetings as a forum to advance Africa’s maritime agenda as envisaged in the African Maritime Transport Charter.

The meeting is also bolstered by the African Union’s 1st Conference of African Ministers responsible for maritime related affairs, which was held back-to-back with the 4th African cross-sectional maritime experts’ workshop at its headquarters in Addis Ababa Ethiopia, in order
to formulate the 2050 African Integrated Maritime Strategy.

Furthermore, the African Ship-Owners Summit held in Accra Ghana 10-12 April, 2012 recommended a unified approach to address the African Maritime Sector in order to achieve a strategic take-off to deliberate on structures for collaboration in the maritime industry at a
continental level, and also deliberate on structures for collaboration in the maritime industry at a continental level.

The Summit thus resolved that a conference for Heads of African Maritime Administrations and Ship Registrars be held.

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