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IMO Postpones More Meetings, Begins Rescheduling Plans

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By The Maritime Executive 05-02-2020 06:40:18

The IMO has postponed meetings which were scheduled to be held in July, including the next regular session of the IMO Council, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  

However, work is underway to prepare a new program for the remainder of 2020. Resuming physical meetings will depend on guidance from the World Health Organization (WHO) and the UK Government, as well as the situation of IMO Member States. A priority list of meetings has been drawn up and will be considered by the Council at its 32nd extraordinary session that will be held by correspondence from May to July. 

The proposal for rescheduling meetings gives priority to a regular session of the IMO Council, followed by meetings of the Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) - which will be preceded by the 7th meeting of the Intersessional Working Group on Reduction of GHG Emissions from Ships - and to the Maritime Safety Committee (MSC).

The IMO Secretariat is exploring the practicalities of holding virtual meetings, including multilingual meetings with simultaneous interpretation into the six official languages of the Organization.

The meetings which were scheduled to be held in July and have now been postponed are: 

• the 124th session of the Council scheduled to take place from June 29 to July 3, 2020;

• the 7th session of the Sub-Committee on Implementation of IMO Instruments scheduled to take place from July 20 to 24, 2020; and

• the 16th meeting of the Joint IMO/ITU Experts Group on Maritime Radiocommunication Matters scheduled to take place from July 6 to 10, 2020 - however, for this meeting, alternative arrangements are currently under consideration, in consultation with ITU and the Chair of the Experts Group.  

The postponements are in addition to those already announced previously:

• the 7th session of the Sub-Committee on Human Element Training and Watchkeeping (HTW) scheduled to take place from June 1 to 5, 2020;

• the 70th session of the Technical Cooperation Committee (TCC), scheduled to take place from June 15 to 18, 2020.

• the 44th session of the Facilitation Committee (FAL), scheduled to take place from 20 to 24 April;

• the 102nd session of the Maritime Safety Committee (MSC), scheduled to take place from May 13 to 22, 2020.

• the second meeting of the IMO Expert Group on Data Harmonization (IMO EG EGDH), scheduled to take place from April 27 to May 1, 2020;

• the port symposium "A Holistic approach to standards for port operational data in maritime supply chains", scheduled to take place on April 30, 2020.

• the 7th meeting of the Intersessional Working Group on Reduction of GHG Emissions from Ships, scheduled to take place from March 23 to 27, 2020;

• the 33rd meeting of the E&T Group (IMSBC), scheduled to take place from March 23 to 27, 2020;

• the 75th session of the Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC), scheduled to take place from March 30 to April 3, 2020;

• the meeting of the Scientific Group of the London Convention and London Protocol scheduled to take place from March 9 to 13, 2020; and

• the 107th session of the Legal Committee (LEG), scheduled to take place from March 16 to 20, 2020.