A global network of centers of excellence in marine technology was officially launched on Monday at IMO headquarters.
The Directors of five regional Maritime Technology Cooperation Centres signed a Memorandum of Understanding to establish the network with centers in Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, Latin America and the Pacific.
The centers are expected to provide leadership in promoting ship energy-efficiency technologies and operations and the reduction of harmful emissions from ships. Through collaboration and outreach activities at regional level, they will help countries develop national maritime energy-efficiency policies and measures, promote the uptake of low-carbon technologies and operations in maritime transport and establish voluntary pilot data-collection and reporting systems.
The centers are the result of the GMN project, run by the IMO and funded by the E.U. The project supports IMO’s work in meeting three key U.N. Sustainable Development Goals: SDG 13, which includes a commitment to combat climate change and its impacts; SDG 7, which commits to ensuring access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all; and SDG 9 on industry, innovation and infrastructure.
The five centers are:
• MTCC-Africa – hosted by Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology, Mombasa, Kenya
• MTCC-Asia – hosted by Shanghai Maritime University, China
• MTCC-Caribbean – hosted by University of Trinidad and Tobago, Trinidad and Tobago
• MTCC-Latin America – hosted by International Maritime University of Panama, Panama
• MTCC-Pacific – hosted by Pacific Community, Suva, Fiji
Speaking at the signing, IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim said: “The GMN project brings together two of the most important themes that IMO and its member states are pursuing as we move into a new era. These are developing new and innovative technology and building the necessary capacity, the latter especially directed to the developing world, to be in a position to take up that technology and then use it to its best advantage.
“Today, we live in a world in which new technology seems poised to have a transforming impact on all our lives. Shipping is no exception. Technology holds the key to a safer and more sustainable future for shipping,” he said.