American Shipper

Malacca nations agree strait safety framework at IMO meeting

Malacca nations agree strait safety framework at IMO meeting

The three littoral nations along the Malacca Strait this week signed a framework to enhance navigational safety on the strait, with support from 38 nations who are members of the International Maritime Organization.

   The framework, called the Cooperative Mechanism, spells out plans drawn up at the last two IMO meetings of the three nations, held in Indonesia and Malaysia. In Singapore this week, the nations agreed to jointly undertake projects to help navigation on the strait and make voluntary contributions to a fund designed to pay for such projects.

   Other nations, including China and the United States have committed to providing funds for safer navigation, as the Malacca Strait plays a key role in worldwide shipping — some consider it the most important shipping lane in the world.

   Earlier this month, the nonprofit Nippon Foundation said it would provide up to one-third of the money needed for navigational safety for the next five years and called on the international shipping community to also contribute, as carriers and shippers benefit from the safe transit of ships through the strait.

   Cooperative Mechanism meetings between the three nations will formally begin next year, and are scheduled to be held annually.

   (For more information on this issue, read 'No strait way to safety,' August American Shipper, page 52.)