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Editor in chief: Angelo Scorza
09/07/18 11:46

WISTA International approved for IMO consultative status

More women are welcomed in the shipping industry, ETF and ECSA say

The International Maritime Organization's (IMO) governing body, the IMO Council, approved the Women's International Shipping and Trading Association (WISTA International) application for consultative status on 5 July 2018.

"Consultative status gives us the opportunity to promote diversity, inclusion and women's empowerment, which are our main aims" said WISTA International President Despina Panayiotou Theodosiou. "We can now formally contribute to the discussion for increasing capacity in our industry, a critical component of which is promoting women in the industry, both shoreside and shipboard. WISTA's efforts support the overarching principles in IMO's Strategic Plan, especially the promotion of Gender Equality and the empowerment of women."

WISTA International has been a voice for female executives in the maritime industry since 1974. Today, it has over 3,000 members worldwide representing 44 National Chapters and participated in a number of global initiatives aimed at increasing diversity and inclusion in the shipping industry. The association partners with organizations around the world including the European Commission, International Chamber of Shipping, InterManager, INTERTANKO, World Maritime University, ISWAN, the Institute of Chartered Shipbrokers, and YoungShip to increase women's participation in the maritime industry in coordination with the UN's sustainable Development Goal 5, Achieve Gender Equality and Empowerment for all Women and Girls. 


More women are welcomed in the shipping industry, ETF and ECSA say


European social partners eager to make shipping more attractive for women seafarers

European Transport Workers Federation, (ETF) and the European Community Shipowners’ Associations (ECSA) discussed possible solutions to increase women’s participation in the shipping industry in Europe. Currently only 2% of the seafaring workforce available for the EU fleet consist of women, whilst gender equality is being put at the heart of the EU’s fundamental values for sustainable and inclusive growth.

Participants to discussion came from a wide range of stakeholders such as the European Commission (Platform for Change), the European Economic and Social Council, the UK Merchant Navy Training Board, national administrations from France and the UK, researchers from the Paris Descartes University, and the Community of European Railway and Infrastructure Companies (CER), who were there so we could learn from good practices from other sectors.

“If we want strong, prosperous and socially sustainable maritime clusters in Europe, gender diversity should be a leading principle as a means to attract and retain new talent in the shipping industry” said Martin Dorsman, Secretary General of the ECSA. “Women role models in senior positions can help to send a message across the industry that women do have a place in this traditionally male-dominated sector”.

“To attract more women to the industry we should improve working conditions for everyone,” said Tonka Cupic, ETF Maritime Transport representative to ETF Women’s Committee. “Reconciliation of work and family life and prevention of harassment are key to not only recruiting but also retaining more women seafarers and enabling them to develop a career in shipping,”


Norway to open WISTA to a male member


WISTA Norway has opened its doors to its first ever male member, Nor-Shipping Director Per Martin Tanggaard. “Per Martin is an enthusiastic, open minded and forward-thinking member of the maritime community. As such he is a perfect ambassador for WISTA and our mission of promoting women within the industry” comments Bjørg Ekonrud, President, WISTA Norway that decided to allow male membership at its 2017 AGM. “We want to be inclusive, of course, but also saw this as a way of building our influence, with prominent male ambassadors helping us carry our message into new arenas, engage new audiences and build new opportunities.”

WISTA’s Waves of Change conference is an established part of Nor-Shipping programme, with associated events and networking highlighting opportunities for women within shipping, while acting to increase diversity, equality and participation; the 2019 conference is scheduled to take place on 4 June in Lillestrøm. The event is also a major sponsor of WISTA International AGM and Conference, taking place in Tromso, Norway on 25-26 October 2018.

“To ensure the maritime and ocean industries have access to the best minds we have to commit to working together to foster an open and inclusive environment. Our message is ‘this is an industry for everybody’ and we need to promote that to ensure our best chance of sustainable success far into the future. Personally I’m delighted to be the first man to join WISTA Norway, and I hope there’ll be many more that see the value of engaging with this important organization to promote goals that we all stand to benefit from” pinpoints Tanggaard who also signed up as the first male mentor for WISTA Norway and YoungShip’s Female Maritime Mentorship programme.

However, WISTA Norway is not the first Chapter to accept male members; WISTA Cyprus, WISTA Brazil, WISTA Switzerland, WISTA USA, WISTA UK, and WISTA Canada already accept male members. In fact each Chapter sets its own requirements for membership.


Damen strengthens female presence in the maritime industry


Damen’s Head of Communications, Sylvia Boer, was recently been appointed President of the Netherlands chapter of WISTA, founded in 2000 and currently with 140 members; she has been a WISTA member since 2008 and joined the organisation’s board in 2013.


A ‘marvellous’ shipping conference took place in Cyprus once again


“Everyone has the right to education and hence my aim to keep the shipping panel discussion open to the wider public, for the third year in a row, with the priceless trust and support of Maravilhosa’s esteemed marketing partners and supporters says Muriel Matta, a very active member of WISTA Cyprus, who early this year organized in Limassol "Shipping: an industry of Passion, Knowledge and Experience - Part Three", that attracted guests from Greece, Sweden, the United Kingdom, Belgium, Ukraine and Lebanon.

In his very recent speech, the CEO of the Italian natural gas infrastructure Company Snam, Marco Alverà, shared the truth about getting the best out of people, talking about unfairness by describing it as "bad news for business"; his favourite experiment involves six months old babies and concluded that scientifically, "humans have an innate sense of fairness" regardless of age, so that he can advice: “when we turn on our heart, we can get the best out of people!”

The opening Keynote Address was delivered by the Minister of Transport, Communications and Works,. Marios Demetriades, followed by a panel discussion with local and international high-profile Shipping personalities and concluded with a Cocktail Reception.

The event was attended by Government dignitaries: the Transport Ministry’s Permanent Secretary, the Department of Merchant Shipping, Diplomats, representatives from Cyprus Shipping Chamber and Cyprus Union of Shipowners, representatives of Cyprus Shipping Organizations, shipping related Associations and Organizations, parents and students, an audience nearing 400 persons.

The theme of this year’s panel discussion was: “Nurturing and Sustaining Cyprus Shipping”. Its purpose was to boost awareness of Shipping among Cypriot citizens and foster discussion with the industry experts pursuant to nurturing and sustaining Cyprus Shipping, to minimize risk exposure.

In his speech, the Minister of Transport acknowledged the growth of the panel from a private community of 110 people in 2016 to a public audience of over 300 people in 2018 and added that “the Cyprus Government has placed and maintains shipping among its main concerns and priorities. A testimony of the Government’s commitment and support to the shipping industry is the creation of a self-standing Deputy Ministry of Shipping as from March 2018. The sustainable growth of Cyprus Shipping is one of the priorities of the Cyprus Government and consequently the Ministry of Transport, Communications and Works will do its utmost to enhance the competitiveness of our flag and of our maritime cluster”.

Charles Meaby, General Manager of DP World Limassol addressed the topic of “Nurturing and Sustaining Cyprus Shipping – ‘The Limassol Port Terminal Operator perspective’”.

Mark O’Neil, CEO of Columbia Marlow Holding Ltd Group’s talk was “‘Easy Come Easy Go’ – let us build on, not squander, the inheritance”.

Andreas Chrysostomou, Acting Secretary General of CLIA-Europe raised the question: “Cyprus Shipping in stagnation?”

Apostolos Belokas, Founder & Managing Editor of SAFETY4SEA talked about the “mega trends affecting sustainable Shipping”.

Katia Christoforou, Head of Commercial at Marin Shipmanagement Ltd gave “A piece of advice”.

CEO of Tototheo Maritime Ltd, Socrates Theodossiou, concluded with his question: “Digital Disruption & Transformation, are YOU ready?”




TAG : Association