IMO and Korea Agree to Boost SMART-C Program
The IMO and the Republic of Korea have signed a suite of agreements to formally establish and boost the IMO-Republic of Korea Sustainable Maritime Transport Cooperation (SMART-C) program.
The goal of the KRW 25.5 billion (approximately $20 million) SMART-C program is to promote sustainable maritime transport systems and a sustainable marine environment by building knowledge and developing technical capacity in developing countries via long-term thematic projects.
This Official Development Assistance (ODA) funding will ensure long-term programming of several technical cooperation projects. Two more project-specific agreements were also signed: SMART-C Leaders project agreement and SMART-C GHG project agreement. Three projects were already initiated under the SMART-C program: SMART-C Women, SMART-C Traffic and RegLitter.
The agreements were signed by IMO Secretary-General, Kitack Lim, and the Minister of Oceans and Fisheries of the Republic of Korea, Seung-hwan Cho, (for the framework agreement) and the Director General of the Maritime Affairs and Safety Policy Bureau, Jonguk Hong, for the other agreements. The signing took place as IMO meets for its 33rd Assembly.
SMART-C Leaders: Capacity-building on implementation of IMO conventions and professional training for International maritime leaders (2023-2027). The goal of the project is to improve the Pacific small island developing states' capacity in ship inspection/port state control/flag state inspection.
SMART-C GHG: Capacity building in two Asian pilot countries for developing national action plans and implementation of the IMO GHG Strategy with the help of GHG emission data (2023-2027). This project aims at the implementation of the maritime GHG reduction regulations by building relevant capacity for baseline emission data collection, management, and analysis, in accordance with the 2023 IMO GHG Strategy.
Projects already initiated under the SMART-C program include:
SMART-C Women: Strengthening women's competencies in the sustainable maritime transport sector through upgrading skills related to digitalization and marine environmental protection (2023-2026). The goal of the project is to contribute to the achievement of gender equality through the increase of employment opportunities for women in the maritime sector in developing countries, in the Asia and Pacific regions, and the provision of training to help them advance their careers in related industries.
RegLitter: Regional Litter Project (2023-2027). The objective of the project is to prevent and reduce marine plastic litter from sea-based sources. It will build on the work implemented under the GloLitter Partnerships Project with further expansion of the activities in Asia and possibly other regions in future.
SMART-C Traffic: Development of a SMART-Maritime traffic management system and improvement of related operational capability in the Philippines (2023-2026). The goal of the project is to develop, operate and pilot trial a web-based e-navigation service that can efficiently analyze and manage maritime safety information in an internet-based environment.
The IMO's Department for Partnerships and Projects will be coordinating the implementation of the projects in close cooperation with IMO's Technical Cooperation Division and with technical backstopping from the Marine Environment Division, Maritime Safety Division and Legal Division.