WISTA International Signs MOU with the IMO
WISTA International and the IMO signed a MOU on technical cooperation on January 27.
The MOU outlines how WISTA will play an important role in helping the IMO further its reach to women in the maritime industry. It describes how WISTA's efforts support the overarching principles in the IMO's Strategic Plan 2018-2023, especially the promotion of gender equality and the empowerment of women.
Four key areas of activity are outlined in the MOU:
to look for opportunities to partner on maritime issues including organizing workshops or speaking on panels at events to boost diversity;
to promote greater engagement for women in maritime, among their members, the broader ocean business community, ocean stakeholders and the public;
to develop and participate in training in other areas of mutual interest; and
to support implementation of Assembly Resolution A.1147(31) on Preserving the legacy of the World Maritime theme for 2019 and Achieving a Barrier-Free Working Environment for Women in the Maritime Sector.
In addition, WISTA and the IMO agreed to 10 areas of collaboration, including a joint IMO-WISTA International study to collect and analyze data on the number of women employed in the maritime sector. These further areas of cooperation leverage WISTA International's observer status at IMO as an opportunity to promote industry leadership and cooperation on gender equality, diversity and inclusion.
Other areas of collaboration include the creation of a database of female experts on maritime subjects, to bring these experts to IMO partnership conferences and activities and to strengthen the cooperation between women in maritime associations.
Despina Panayiotou Theodosiou, CEO of Tototheo Maritime and President of WISTA International, argues that a changing world, with changing technology, demands a changing maritime workforce. Companies overlooking key groups of talent – based on gender, culture or ethnicity – will fail to evolve and adapt to the new reality.