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Australia at the IMO

Australia at the IMO
  • Australia is a foundation member of the IMO and has held a seat on the IMO Council—the organisation’s executive organ—for many years.
  • Australia is a category b member of the IMO Council and we work hard to ensure the Organization is ready to meet the new challenges arising from emerging technology, global trade expansion, and environmental developments.
  • Australia continues to lead reform to make the IMO more resilient, transparent, and effective. Our aim is to equip the IMO to navigate the opportunities presented by emerging technology, global trade trends, and increasing environmental standards.
  • Australia believes that increasing member State participation will strengthen the IMO and ensure all perspectives can be heard. We support hybrid meeting attendance and the establishment of a voluntary donor trust fund to assist Small Island Developing States to send delegations to IMO meetings.
  • Shipping is critical to Australia’s economic prosperity, environmental protection and standard of living, transporting 98 per cent (by volume) of Australia’s international merchandise trade.
Our contribution
  • Australia is dedicated to the work of IMO. We participate in all IMO meetings, chair several working groups and maintain permanent representation in London. 
  • Australia is committed to improving representation on Council. We advocate measures to improve representation from Small Island Developing States and developing countries, for better recognition of seafaring nations’ interests and to recognise the special challenges faced by landlocked member States.
  • Australia has successfully advocated for access to consolidated IMO instruments to assist all member States to fully implement maritime standards.
  • Australia works with member States and the IMO Secretariat to achieve fair and sustainable council decisions.

Meet our team

Council membership comes under one of three categories:

  • Category a comprises 10 member States with the largest interest in providing international shipping services
  • Category b comprises 10 member States with the largest interest in international seaborne trade
  • Category c comprises 20 member States with special interests in maritime transport or navigation and whose election to Council ensures representation by all major geographic regions of the world
  • The IMO develops and maintains comprehensive standards for international commercial shipping.
  • The IMO works to prevent marine and atmospheric pollution from ships, and supports the United Nations’ sustainable development goals.
  • The 40 Member IMO Council is elected by the Assembly.