VANCOUVER – Today is World Maritime Day and this year it recognizes the International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) 70th anniversary. The IMO is the United Nations specialized agency responsible for the safety, security, and environmental standards for international shipping. Canada was instrumental in its establishment and leads innovation on key challenges such as reducing greenhouse gases, eradicating invasive marine species, and protecting marine mammals.
Canada is a trading nation that relies upon marine transportation to connect consumers, shippers, and communities to domestic and global markets. The national economic impact of marine shipping is equal to approximately 1.8% of the Canadian economy, moving over $205 billion of goods annually.
The importance of diversification in trade is ever so more important in the face of growing uncertainty in our trading relationship with the United States. International shipping moves approximately 90% of world trade.
While Canada expands to reach a global marketplace, Canadians and Indigenous communities are also resolute in the need to protect the oceans and its vast coastline. The commercial marine industry shares this focus and is heartened by the Government of Canada’s significant investment in protecting our coastal waters through the Oceans Protection Plan.
The most visible symbol of the challenge before us, is the plight of the declining population of Southern Resident Killer Whales. This past summer, Canada’s marine industry implemented operational measures to assist with this species’ recovery, including reducing speed and routing vessels away from foraging areas. We will continue to progress world-leading science and operational and technical measures focused on reducing ship-generated noise through the Port of Vancouver’sECHO Program.
Canada’s ability to move people and goods safely without harming coastal waters is critical to the economic security of the country. Canada has demonstrated the ability to move all types of cargo safely, and continues to evolve and implement improved practices that are robust and innovative.
On this day, we encourage you to consider how shipping touches your life. Whether you are a consumer, live in a remote coastal community, or work in the manufacturing, construction, mining, agriculture, or energy industry – you have a connection to shipping.
About Chamber of Shipping
The Chamber of Shipping represents commercial carriers and their agents in Canada which trade internationally and domestically. The marine transportation sector is vital to supporting Canadian trade and our continued prosperity and high standard of living depend on our ability to deliver resources, goods, and people in a responsible and competitive manner. Canada remains a strong trading nation, with one in five Canadian jobs and more than 60 per cent of our gross domestic product directly linked to exports.