Karachi: The three-days International Maritime Conference (IMC-21) organized on the theme of ‘Development of Blue Economy under a Secure and Sustainable Environment: A Shared Future for Western Indian Ocean Region’ by National Institute of Maritime Affairs (NIMA) under the auspices of Pakistan Navy has culminated at Karachi. The Foreign Minister of Pakistan, Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi graced the Closing Ceremony as Chief Guest. The conference included an array of prominent speakers who delivered keynote addresses during the conference presenting their dynamic thoughts over theme of the conference.
Addressing the audience, the Chief Guest highlighted that Government is cognizant of the importance of Blue Economy and taking all possible measures for its development. He underscored the huge potential of the maritime domain, where all other sectors of economy crisscross and also underlined that unveiling of new Shipping Policy offers tangible benefits for investment in maritime sector. While addressing, the Chief Guest added that China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) was rightfully considered a game changer not only for Pakistan but for the economic development and prosperity of the entire region.
The Foreign Minister praised Pakistan Navy for promoting maritime awareness in the country, spearheading efforts for the development of Blue Economy and taking various initiatives to ensure peace & order at sea individually and in collaboration with regional and extra regional navies. He also commended NIMA for attracting a large number of intellectuals around the globe and making the Conference a success.
Earlier, Chief of the Naval Staff, Admiral Muhammad Amjad Khan Niazi in his closing remarks thanked all the speakers, panelists and participants who travelled from far and wide or participated virtually to add great value to the Conference. The Naval Chief emphasized on the great potential and prospects of the Western Indian Ocean Region for regional integration, inclusive development and international cooperation. The Admiral also praised the efforts of NIMA for successful conduct of the event.
The last day of IMC comprised over two sessions. During the former session, Minister of State for Climate Change Ms Zartaj GuI graced the conference as Chief Guest. Eminent scholars deliberated on the Ocean governance, policies and laws. Chairman Institute of Marine Engineering, Science & Technology UK, Capt Muhammad Shafique explicated the blue economy paradigm in light of IMO and UN bodies. Later, Director of Maritime Research World Maritime University Sweden, Dr. Aykut I. OLCER, in an online talk extended his views regarding importance of decarburization of international shipping for a sustainable planet. The last speaker of the session was Regional Head Sindh and Balochistan WWF-Pakistan, Dr. Tahir Rasheed to underscored blue growth strategy, opportunities for socio-economic development for coastal communities.
In the third and last session, CEO ZERI, Mr Gunter Puli presented his views online on Blue Growth Strategy for the Future World. Later, another important keynote address was delivered by Vice Admiral (Retd) Iftikhar Ahmed Rao emphasizing on Blue economy.
At the closing of the Conference, on behalf of Director General NIMA Vice Admiral (Retd) Abdul Aleem, Director NIMA Karachi Commodore (Retd) Ali Abbas integrated the Conference proceedings and presented the recommendations. He thanked the Chief Guest for gracing the occasion with his presence. The conference was attended by a large number of dignitaries from across the globe, Officers from Defence Forces of Pakistan and friendly countries, academia, media representatives and researchers from local and international think tanks.