With “Empowering Women in the maritime community” as the theme for 2019, World Maritime Day, the International Maritime Organisation (IMO), is working to expand female participation in the industry. To this end, IMO has unveiled a new logo to boost the move. “IMO has a strong commitment to helping achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and continues to support the participation of women in both shore-based and seagoing posts, in line with the goals outlined under SDG 5: “Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls,” Kitack Lim, IMO Secretary-General, said. “This theme will give IMO the opportunity to work with various maritime stakeholders towards achieving the SDGs, particularly SDG 5, to foster an environment in which women are identified and selected for career development opportunities in maritime administrations, ports and maritime training institutes and to encourage more conversation for gender equality in the maritime space,” Lim continued. He noted that in 1988, few maritime training institutes opened their doors to female students. However, the United Nations (UN) specialised agencies forged a global programme known as the Integration of Women in the Maritime Sector. This initiative helped to put in place an institutional framework to incorporate a gender dimension into IMO’s policies and procedures, with resolutions adopted to ensure access to maritime training and employment opportunities for women in the maritime sector. “Today, IMO’s newly renamed, Women in Maritime programme is going strong. Empowering women fuels thriving economies across the world, spurs growth and development, and benefits all of us working in the global maritime community as we strive towards safe, secure, clean and sustainable shipping,” Lim further said. Female graduates of the World Maritime University (WMU) and the International Maritime Law Institute (IMLI), Lim said, are today working as maritime administrators and decision makers, with a positive impact as role models in encouraging new female recruits. He said the empowerment of women has been supported through gender-specific fellowships by facilitating access to high-level technical training for women in the maritime sector in developing countries. The selection of the theme: “Empowering Women in the Maritime Community” will ensure a renewed focus on the IMO women in the maritime programme, and on achieving the goals of SDG 5, throughout 2019, the UN agency said.