Promoting national maritime transport policy in Saint Lucia

A national workshop in Saint Lucia has brought together participants from various Government bodies and other stakeholders to discuss the development of a national maritime transport policy. The workshop is aimed at highlighting the promotion and development of such a policy as a good governance practice to guide planning, decision making and relevant legislative action. IMO is running the workshop (22-24 June) in close cooperation with the Saint Lucia Airports and Seaports Authority (SLASPA) and the Permanent Mission of Saint Lucia to IMO.

The workshop forms part of IMO’s initiative to assist IMO Member States, particularly Small Island Developing States (SIDs) and Least Developing Countries (LDCs), to develop national maritime transport policy, with a view to ensuring a sustainable maritime transport system and facilitate the achievement of the maritime related Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

World Maritime University Associate Professors Patrick Donner and George Theocharidis are delivering the workshop, with support from IMO’s Jonathan Pace and Nicolaos Charalambous.

On the margins of the workshop, Mr Charalambous and Mr Pace met the Hon Mr Stevenson King, the newly-appointed Minister of Infrastructure, Ports and Labour of Saint Lucia and Ms Allison Jean, Permanent Secretary at the Ministry. During the meeting, which was also attended by Mr Tafawa Williams, Alternate Permanent Representative of Saint Lucia to IMO, the two sides discussed the maritime IMO-related priorities of Saint Lucia and possible areas where IMO may be able to assist the maritime development of the Island by providing technical assistance or fellowships for studies of qualified candidates at IMO’s international training institutes, the World Maritime University (WMU) and the International Maritime Law Institute (IMLI).

The IMO team also met other officials, including Mr Julian Dubois, Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of External Affairs, Mr Keigan Cox, General Manager of SLASPA, and Mr Christopher Alexander, Director, Maritime Affairs at SLASPA and discussed similar issues.pix1

Cooperation to enhance maritime security in west and central Africa

Maritime security experts have met in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (15-17 June) to share expertise on how cooperation on maritime surveillance monitoring and communication systems in the South Atlantic can benefit countries in west and central Africa. Delegates from 11 African countries, the Brazilian Navy and various African regional organizations and other countries shared their experiences and challenges in enhancing maritime security, with a view to improving maritime security through better maritime governance, maritime situation awareness and cooperation across the South Atlantic.

The meeting also discussed the institutional framework required to foster maritime governance and security in the South Atlantic. IMO and the Brazilian Navy co-sponsored an “Experts Panel meeting on Maritime Security in the South Atlantic” – a follow-up meeting to the Situational Awareness Workshop also held in Brazil last year, which sought to identify opportunities for technical cooperation, training and assistance to countries which are part of the South Atlantic Maritime Coordination Area.

Additionally, IMO’s Chris Trelawny had the privilege of awarding the prestigious Brazilian Maritime Safety Award, to the Brazilian naval ship corvette Almirante Barroso, which was involved in rescuing 220 immigrants in the Mediterranean Sea in September last year. Gisela Vieira, Maritime Safety Division, joined Mr. Trelawny in representing IMO at the various activities.

Sustainable use of the oceans

IMO will have an important contribution to make to the UN 2017 Oceans Conference, which is being co-hosted by Fiji and Sweden from 5 to 9 June 2017 and aims to support the implementation of Sustainable Development Goal 14 (Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development). Through the development of global standards to ensure shipping does not adversely impact the environment and through its extensive technical cooperation programme, IMO supports the aims and objectives of SDG 14.

Preparations for the 2017 Oceans Conference were discussed when Stefan Micallef, IMO’s Director, Marine Environment Division, met the representative of the co-host, H.E. Ambassador Mr. Peter Thomson, Permanent Representative of Fiji to the United Nations and President-elect for the 71st session of the UN General Assembly (16 June).pix2

IMO Secretary-General in Romania

IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim has highlighted the crucial work of maritime training institutes to train and equip new generations of seafarers and other shipping personnel, during a visit (16 June) to the Romanian Maritime Training Centre CERONAV, which is celebrating its 40th anniversary. During the formal festivities, Mr Lim congratulated CERONAV for its work in training seafarers during the past four decades and commended Romania for its active and enthusiastic participation in the IMO Maritime Ambassadors Scheme, with the appointment of three Romanian IMO Maritime Ambassadors, who are helping to promote seafaring as a career and raise the visibility of the shipping industry.

On Friday (17 June), Mr Lim met Romanian senior Government officials including the Chairman of the Chamber of Deputies, Mr. Florin Iordache; the President of the Committee for Infrastructure and Transport in the Chamber of Deputies, Mr. Mihai Lupu; the Minister of Transport, Mr. Dan Marian Costescu; the State Secretary Mr. Liviu Ionut Mosteanu; along with CERONAV General Manager and Chairman of Board of Directors Mr Ovidiu Sorin Cupşa.pix3

Together towards cleaner oceans

​IMO is contributing to a United Nations meeting covering marine debris, plastics and microplastics in New York (13-17 June). Discussions are focusing on information exchange between key players involved in the protection of the marine environment – in the context of the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), which establishes rules governing all uses of the oceans and their resources. IMO’s Stefan Micallef, Director of the Marine Environment Division, took part in a panel on the environmental, social and economic dimensions of marine debris, plastics and microplastics.

He provided an overview of the progress made in preventing, reducing and controlling pollution in this field, including an overview of IMO’s work to address this issue. This includes IMO’s MARPOL convention for the prevention of pollution from ships, which bans the disposal of plastics into the sea from ships and generally prohibits the discharge of all garbage into the sea, except in certain very specific circumstances, and the London Convention/Protocol, which in effect bans the dumping of plastics at sea. The Organization is also a co-lead for sea-based litter in the Global Partnership on Marine Litter and manages the GESAMP group of scientific experts, which studies the impact of microplastics in the marine environment.

In addition to this week’s meeting, Stefan Micallef and Fredrik Haag will represent IMO at the annual face to face meeting of UN-Oceans, where recent progress of joint activities, and the 2016-2017 work programme is being discussed.pix4

Peru becomes 51st State to accede to Ballast Water Management Convention

Peru has acceded to the Ballast Water Management Convention (BWM Convention), the IMO treaty designed to counter the threat to marine ecosystems by potentially invasive species transported in ships’ ballast water. This brings the number of States party to the BWM Convention to 51, representing 34.87% of the world’s merchant fleet tonnage. Ambassador of Peru to the United Kingdom, H.E. Mr. Claudio de la Puente Ribeyro, met IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim at IMO HQ, London (10 June) to hand over the instrument of accession.

IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim has reiterated his request to countries that have not already done so, to ratify the BWM Convention as soon as possible in order to establish a certain date for entry into force, which will facilitate the work to make any necessary amendments to the Convention.pix5

Spreading the word at Posidonia

​IMO officials have been prominent at the biennual Posidonia shipping industry trade fair which is taking place this week (6-10 June) in Athens, Greece. Secretary-General Kitack Lim joined Greece’s Prime Minister Tsipras at the formal opening of the event, where he spoke of how shipping is essential to the sustainable development and growth of the global economy and about IMO’s work to ensure that shipping itself reflects the increasingly higher expectations that society now has regarding safety standards and environmental performance.

Later in the week, he spoke at a working lunch at the Piraeus Marine Club and at the Ship-owners Forum organized by maritime media specialist Trade winds.

Elsewhere, IMO’s Juvenal Shiundu gave an update on IMO’s work on environmental issues to a forum organized by the North American Marine Protection Association and the American-Hellenic Chamber of Commerce, and participated in a conference entitled “Where is shipping heading after COP21”, organized by the Hellenic Marine Protection Association.pix6

Dominican Republic accedes to treaty covering seafarer training

The Dominican Republic has today (9 June) acceded to the IMO convention that specifies global standards of training, certification and watchkeeping for seafarers (the STCW Convention). H.E. Dr. Federico Alberto Cuello Camilo, Ambassador of the Dominican Republic to the UK, met IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim at IMO HQ, London to hand over the instrument of accession.

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Promoting maritime security in west and central Africa

Prevention of piracy, armed robbery against ships and illicit maritime activity in west and central Africa is on the agenda at a meeting of the G7 Group of Friends of the Gulf of Guinea in Lisbon, Portugal (6-7 June). The meeting is focusing on implementation of the Code of Conduct, which was signed by governments in the region, in 2013, to enhance cooperation to counter piracy and armed robbery at sea.

The meeting will assess future prospects of the implementation process, including efforts of the private sector to strengthen maritime security in the Gulf of Guinea. Additionally, participants will examine international initiatives in the region, including Africa’s Integrated Maritime Strategy (AIM 2050), the European Union Strategy for the Gulf of Guinea, together with initiatives by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the Community of Portuguese Speaking Countries (CPLP).

The Portuguese Presidency of the G7 Group of Friends of the Gulf of Guinea (G7++ FoGG) is hosting the meeting. IMO is represented by Gisela Vieira.

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IMO contributes to international port security conference

​IMO’s aims of building on existing guidelines and tools to assist in improved implementation of security measures in ports have been outlined at the 7th annual International Port Security conference in London, United Kingdom (1-2 June). Chris Trelawny of the Maritime Safety Division highlighted how improved cooperation between ports and ships will enhance the efficiency of the maritime sector as a whole. He emphasized the importance of working with developed and developing countries, shipping, public and private sector ports in order to promote best practices and build bridges between the diverse sectors.

To-date, IMO’s range of guidance and tools surrounding security measures in ports and port facilities include: model courses for port facility security officers; guidelines on training and certification for port facility security officers; and the Guide to Maritime Security and ISPS Codepix9

IMO workshop in China promotes energy efficiency measures

An IMO workshop has raised awareness of the organization’s regulatory regime dealing with improving energy efficiency and the control of GHG emissions from ships. Participants from Chinese governmental departments, academia and other related bodies attended the three-day “MARPOL Annex VI and Technology Transfer” workshop in Dalian, China (30 May – 1 June). The event was organized under IMO’s GloMEEP project, which is supporting uptake and implementation of energy efficiency measures for shipping in developing countries. China is one of the 10 GloMEEP lead pilot countries.

The workshop was co-hosted by China MSA and Dalian Maritime University (DMU). Astrid Dispert and a team of consultants represented IMO at the event.

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Saint Lucia accedes to key marine environment protection treaties

Saint Lucia has acceded to four IMO treaties, including important conventions covering ballast water management (BWM Convention) and emissions from ship exhausts and energy efficiency (MARPOL Annex VI). Mr. Tafawa Williams, Alternate Permanent Representative of Saint Lucia to IMO, met IMO’s Frederick Kenney, Director, Legal Affairs and External Relations Division, to deposit the instruments of accession, today (26 May). This brings the number of States party to the Ballast Water Management Convention to 50, representing 34.81% of the world’s merchant fleet tonnage.

The full list of treaties acceded to by Saint Lucia is as follows:

– the International Convention for the Control and Management of Ships’ Ballast Water and Sediments, 2004 (BWM 2004)

– Protocol of 1997 to amend the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships, 1973, as modified by the Protocol of 1978 relating thereto (MARPOL PROT 1997)

– the International Convention on Civil Liability for Bunker Oil Pollution Damage, 2001 (BUNKERS 2001)

– International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Fishing Vessel Personnel, 1995 (STCW-F 1995)

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Implementing environmental treaties in Indonesia

A national implementation workshop has been held in Jakarta, Indonesia (18-19 May), under the auspices of the IMO-Norad environmental project, which is supporting six east Asian countries to prepare for the ratification and implementation of key IMO marine environmental conventions. The Indonesian National Stakeholder Workshop and Project Monitoring Meeting discussed the National Implementation Plans for the Ballast Water Management Convention (BWM) and the Anti-fouling Systems Convention (AFS), both of which Indonesia has acceded to. For the BWM convention, the meeting discussed the immediate next steps to develop detailed implementation regulations as well as plans to undertake port biological baseline surveys to support risks assessments and compliance monitoring and enforcement. More than 50 national stakeholders attended the meeting and workshop, which was facilitated by IMO’s Jose Matheickal. Support from the IMO-Norad Project has helped Indonesia to undertake necessary legal, policy and institutional reforms and prepare for the implementation of the BWM Convention, which is close to reaching entry into force criteria.  

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ICAO Secretary General: Partnership and Investment Crucial to Sustainable Aviation Development in Africa

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MONTRÉAL AND MALABO, EQUATORIAL GUINEA, 5 JULY 2016 – Significant contributions towards safe and secure air transport and the prosperity and sustainability of African communities could be achieved if sufficient investment is made towards the development of Africa’s civil aviation capacities, including infrastructure and skilled human resources, remarked ICAO’s Secretary General during the Third ICAO Africa and Indian Ocean (AFI) Aviation Week in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, which concluded last week. 

“I am a firm believer in partnerships, and Africa is one of aviation’s greatest examples today of what cooperation and commitment can deliver in terms of concrete civil aviation progress,” Dr. Liu highlighted. “ICAO has been working very hard to foster this type of cooperation in every world region, and we are tremendously grateful that these comprehensive AFI Week events have now established themselves as an essential instrument for Africa-wide civil aviation progress.”

The 2016 AFI Aviation Week was hosted by the Republic of Equatorial Guinea, at the African Union Conference Center in Malabo. The wide ranging series of events convened included: the Third Africa-Indian Ocean (AFI) Aviation Safety and Security Symposium; the Second Human Resources Development Fund (HRDF) for Africa Meeting; the Seventeenth Comprehensive Regional Implementation Plan for Aviation Safety in Africa (AFI Plan) Steering Committee Meeting; and the Third Comprehensive Regional Implementation Plan for Aviation Security and Facilitation in Africa (AFI SECFAL Plan) Steering Committee Meeting.

A key agenda item saw the many senior officials in attendance taking stock of the progress and status of regional safety targets, set by the African Ministers of Transport in 2012. Respective participants also reviewed the status of implementation of ongoing initiatives and plans guiding effective cooperation on aviation safety, security and human resources development, discussed the related outcomes from recent African high-level meetings and Declarations, and heard proposals on how the specific work programmes under each area could be further improved in light of latest data and developments.

“The successful implementation of current Safety and Security priorities are directly linked to States having the necessary human resources at their disposal, inclusive of the required qualifications, competencies and experience to address their responsibilities,” Dr. Liu noted. “These issues are particularly crucial for African States which are now experiencing significant traffic growth, whether due to increased international or domestic operations.”

Dr. Liu recognized some key States which have been important early contributors and champions regarding the ICAO Human Resources Development Fund, and she also took time to highlight how valuable ICAO’s many partnerships on the African continent have been to the achievement of practical and sustainable civil aviation development, commenting that “in supporting African States to meet their obligations under the Chicago Convention, the African Union Commission and the AU specialized agency, the African Civil Aviation Commission (AFCAC), as well as Regional Economic Communities, are sparing no effort as we continue to jointly assist national governments in meeting global and regional targets in line with ICAO’s Strategic Objectives. Their support and collaboration are greatly appreciated.”

The AFI Aviation Week setting also provided ICAO with an opportunity to congratulate representatives of several States present, for their improved level of compliance with ICAO’s Standards and Recommended Practices (SARPs). “We are seeing an increasing number of States with ICAO Universal Safety Oversight Audit Programme Effective Implementation rates over 60 percent, and a diminishing number of outstanding Significant Safety Concerns. These are indeed very positive trends, but they must continue to be improved upon,” Dr Liu said.

Since taking office, Secretary General Liu has been advocating tirelessly with ICAO Member States, UN system agencies, the donor community, and all relevant stakeholders, on aviation’s relationship to successful sustainable development planning and the attainment of the United Nations Agenda 2030 Sustainable Development Goals.  “Effectively resourced and administered civil aviation systems in States are essential to establishing air transport’s global connectivity, which in turn serves as a key catalyst for sustainable economic and social development,” she commented, adding that  a fundamental prerequisite for gaining access to air transport’s global connectivity and opening up access to international markets and trade flows is a safe and secure air transport system through effectively implementing SARPs and policies.

As part of the events, the Steering Committees of the AFI Plan and AFI SECFAL Plan adopted a project- based approach to implementation of these plans and endorsed the outcomes of the Third AFI Week Symposia for the enhancement of aviation safety as well as security and facilitation in Africa.

During Dr. Liu’s courtesy call to President Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, the Head of State of Equatorial Guinea pledged to make a financial contribution of $200,000 to the Human Resources Development Fund (HRDF) for the African civil aviation sector.

Side meetings were held with various States on on-going ICAO assistance activities aimed at improving safety and security oversight. The occasion was also used to release the Second Edition of the Annual Safety Report of the RASG-AFI; signing of the project document for membership of the African Flight Procedure Programmes (AFPP) by two States aimed at fostering PBN implementation; and of an ICAO Technical Cooperation Bureau project agreement on safety and security assistance with Equatorial Guinea.

ICAO’s 2016 AFI Aviation Week attracted over 200 participants from 35 States and 25 international and regional organizations.

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International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) – World Customs Organization (WCO) Joint Conference on Enhancing Air Cargo Security and Facilitation

Date: 26 – 28 July 2016
Location: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Venue: Sama-Sama Hotel, Kuala Lumpur International Airport, Jalan CTA4b, 64000 KLIA

ICAO-WCO Joint Conference on Enhancing Air Cargo Security and Facilitation – the Path to Effective Implementation and the concurrent ICAO Exhibition on Air Cargo Security and Facilitation Technologies and Services.

This event, hosted by the Ministry of Transport of Malaysia and the Royal Malaysian Customs Department, will be held at the Sama-Sama Hotel at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia from 26 to 28 July 2016.

The Conference, which will include panel discussions and information sessions, will consider recent collaborative efforts between aviation security and Customs authorities in the field of air cargo and convey best practice information on implementation of the latest regulatory changes.

The Conference will be conducted in English. 

Attendance at this Conference will benefit representatives in air cargo and mail security and/or trade facilitation by providing insight into ICAO-WCO collaborative endeavours which are designed to strengthen air cargo security while facilitating the international flow of goods.

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ICAO World Aviation Forum

Date: 26 September 2016
Location: Montréal, Canada
Venue: ICAO HQ, 999 Robert-Bourassa Boulevard

The Forum is designed for high-level government officials responsible for transport and infrastructure, finance, economy, and tourism; and key industry and financial partners. The objective of IWAF 2016 is to identify needs, facilitate the funding and financing required to accelerate the implementation of international civil aviation global standards and policies in support of the No Country Left Behind (NCLB) initiative, and to share information and best practices with a view to ensuring sufficient resources for sustainable aviation development. The Forum will be conducted in the six languages of the Organization.

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No Country Left Behind Initiative

At the initiative of the Council, ICAO launched the No Country Left Behind (NCLB) campaign to assist States to effectively implement ICAO Standards and Recommended Practices (SARPs) and policies.

NCLB focuses and expands ICAO’s support to States for globally harmonized implementation of SARPs so that all States have access to the significant socio-economic benefits of a safe and reliable aviation system. These socio-economic benefits include: expanded tourism; greater access for businesses and producers to foreign supplies and markets; improved emergency transport and search and rescue capabilities; and many other cultural and economic advantages arising from the global connectivity provided by aviation.

The success of NCLB depends in part on the support of, and collaboration with, partners and donors. It requires firm commitment from States, as well as significant investment involving both aviation and non-aviation sectors.

The campaign encourages the provision of resources, through well-established economic development frameworks at both international and national levels, for the effective implementation of global aviation Standards. In this regard, ICAO will use its unique role as an advocate for aviation by:

​a) ​promoting and advising governments on the benefits of aviation for their national aspirations;

 

​b) ​facilitating the mobilization of resources in cooperation with development banks, funds and other financial institutions; and

 

​c) ​partnering with international organizations on matters of mutual interest.

In the air transport field, to assist States in the liberalization process in line with the NCLB initiative, ICAO made considerable efforts to provide more targeted assistance catering to the needs of States, particularly developing countries.

These include: advocacy activities through various meetings to raise the awareness of States and stakeholders of ICAO policies and guidance in the air transport field; promoting understanding of the pivotal role of aviation and its contribution to broader economic development; and encouraging implementation of ICAO policies such as on liberalization, fair competition, consumer protection, and taxation and charges.

In September, ICAO and the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) adopted a related statement at the joint High-level Forum on Tourism and Air Transport Development held in Medellín, Colombia.

In reference to the environmental programme’s assistance to States, ICAO’s capacity-building and assistance strategy for the development and implementation of States’ action plans on CO2 emissions reduction activities is a concrete NCLB example.

In line with the NCLB initiative, the Global Aviation Training (GAT) Office has initiated an action plan to implement a group of recommendations developed by the Council, using an analytical approach to determine the main activities to support Member States in aviation training and human resources development.

ICAO Council President Advances Aviation Cooperation in Africa

MONTRÉAL, 4 FEBRUARY 2016 – Consistent with the UN aviation agency’s ongoing prioritization of the effective implementation in all States of global civil aviation’s standards and policies, ICAO Council President Dr. Olumuyiwa Benard Aliu conducted a wide range of high-level meetings and consultations while visiting Ethiopia last week.

President Aliu was in Addis Ababa for the 28th Ordinary Session of the African Union (AU) Executive Council, and the 26th Ordinary Session of the AU Assembly, and was joined on the occasion by ICAO’s Regional Directors for its Eastern and Southern African and Western and Central African Offices, Messrs. Barry Kashambo and Mam Sait Jallow, respectively.

A key goal of the President’s visit was to continue to generate political will in support African States’ fundamental capacities for aviation safety and security oversight, air transport infrastructure modernization, training and skilled human resources development, and improved liberalization and open skies through greater multilateralism. Special focus in the training area was placed on taking better advantage of Africa’s Human Resources Development Fund (HRDF), as well as aligning related goals with the recent AU prioritization of empowering women and greater opportunities for youth.

President Aliu took the opportunity of the high-level AU Addis Ababa events to hold a number of bilateral meetings in support of these and other goals with Heads of State, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, and a number of other senior government, UN and international and regional officials. Ms. Iyabo Sosina, the Secretary General of African Civil Aviation Commission (AFCAC), joined President Aliu for the bilateral meetings.

The Heads of State met during his visit included the President of Namibia, H.E Hage Geingob; the President of Djibouti, H.E Ismaïl Omar Guelleh; the President of Liberia, H.E Ellen Johnson Sirleaf; and the President of Dr. Aliu’s home State of Nigeria, H.E Muhammadu Buhari. Views were also exchanged with the Representative of Equatorial Guinea to the African Union.

In addition, meetings were held with the Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma; AU Commissioner for Infrastructure and Energy, Dr. Elham Ibrahim; AU Commissioner for Political Affarirs, Aisha Abdullahi; the Executive Secretary of the Economic Commission for Africa (ECA), Dr. Carlos Lopes; the President of the African Development Bank (AfDB), Mr. Akinwumi Adesina; and the Chief Executive Officer of The New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD), Dr. Ibrahim Assane Mayaki.

President Aliu also met with the Minister of Transport of the Federal Republic of Ethiopia, H.E. Workneh Gebeyehu, senior management of the Ethiopian Civil Aviation Authority, Ethiopian Airlines and the Ethiopian Airport Enterprise, and was pleased to be provided a visit to Ethiopian airport, maintenance and training facilities.

Throughout these many discussions, President Aliu consistently emphasized the need to strengthen regional and sub-regional cooperation in Africa, in order to achieve the objectives of ICAO’s “No Country Left Behind” initiative and better enable African States to be able to access and prosper from the benefits of safe and rapid global air transport connectivity. There was also general agreement in many instances on the need for intensified cooperation between ICAO the many agencies now focused on optimizing African development cooperation and coordination.

“ICAO is grateful to Ethiopia for hosting this visit, and for the determined cooperation it and other African states offer towards finding multilateral solutions to civil aviation challenges,” Dr. Aliu commented.

“Like all ICAO Member States, African countries will face significant but surmountable challenges as the air transport sector doubles its passenger and flight volumes over the next 15 years. They will, however, be able to count on our cooperation to foster conditions that enable the necessary infrastructure modernization and skilled personal development to take place, consistent with our ‘No Country Left Behind’ priorities.”

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Strategic Objectives – Security Facilitation

Amendment 23 to Annex 9 – Facilitation became applicable in February. The Amendment focuses on Appendix 13 to Annex 9 and is intended to enhance passenger data sharing and efficient responses to a pandemic or large-scale epidemic. By year’s end, 48 States had responded to the State letter on Amendment 23, notifying ICAO of their compliance with or differences to the amended Annex 9.

In November, the Council adopted Amendment 24 to Annex 9. This focuses on facilitating the transport of persons with disabilities and also relates to such issues as the security of the travel document issuance process; inspection of travel documents at airports; utilization of Advance Passenger Information (API) and Passenger Name Record (PNR) data systems; and the procedures relating to the removal of inadmissible persons and deportees.

Guidelines for States’ implementation of PNR system requirements and dissemination of the PNRGOV message were posted on ICAO’s website. Endorsed by ICAO, the WCO and the International Air Transport Association (IATA), the PNRGOV message is a standard electronic format for transmitting PNR data from airlines to States, and is intended to harmonize the use of PNR systems globally, increase the effectiveness of data utilization and enhance both aviation security and facilitation. Additional facilitation documents can be found here.

ICAO joined IATA and WCO in compiling a passenger data toolkit that contains a set of training and awareness materials on API and PNR. The toolkit will be used in the context of a worldwide campaign to promote global standards and guidelines for API and PNR.

The fourth edition of the Guidelines on Advance Passenger Information, published jointly by ICAO, WCO and IATA, was made available. The document aims to help States implement national API programmes as well as promote international harmonization. It incorporates guidance on the Passenger List (PAXLST), a standard electronic message developed specifically to handle passenger manifest transmissions. It features new provisions for addressing aviation security as well as issues related to data protection and “Interactive API” (iAPI), a more advanced method of passenger processing at airports. Both the PNRGOV message and the API guidelines complement relevant Annex 9 SARPs.

A facilitation seminar for States of the NACC Region was held in Mexico in May. The seminar focused on programme priorities as well as issues relating to inadmissible persons and deportees and the establishment of national air transport facilitation programmes. API and PNR data matters were also emphasized.

ICAO COUNCIL PRESIDENT ADVANCES AVIATION COOPERATION IN AFRICA

MONTRÉAL, 4 FEBRUARY 2016 – Consistent with the UN aviation agency’s ongoing prioritization of the effective implementation in all States of global civil aviation’s standards and policies, ICAO Council President Dr. Olumuyiwa Benard Aliu conducted a wide range of high-level meetings and consultations while visiting Ethiopia last week.

President Aliu was in Addis Ababa for the 28th Ordinary Session of the African Union (AU) Executive Council, and the 26th Ordinary Session of the AU Assembly, and was joined on the occasion by ICAO’s Regional Directors for its Eastern and Southern African and Western and Central African Offices, Messrs. Barry Kashambo and Mam Sait Jallow, respectively.

A key goal of the President’s visit was to continue to generate political will in support African States’ fundamental capacities for aviation safety and security oversight, air transport infrastructure modernization, training and skilled human resources development, and improved liberalization and open skies through greater multilateralism. Special focus in the training area was placed on taking better advantage of Africa’s Human Resources Development Fund (HRDF), as well as aligning related goals with the recent AU prioritization of empowering women and greater opportunities for youth.

President Aliu took the opportunity of the high-level AU Addis Ababa events to hold a number of bilateral meetings in support of these and other goals with Heads of State, UN Secretary General

Ban Ki-moon, and a number of other senior government, UN and international and regional officials.

Ms. Iyabo Sosina, the Secretary General of African Civil Aviation Commission (AFCAC), joined President Aliu for the bilateral meetings.

The Heads of State met during his visit included the President of Namibia, H.E Hage Geingob; the President of Djibouti, H.E Ismaïl Omar Guelleh; the President of Liberia, H.E Ellen Johnson Sirleaf; and the President of Dr. Aliu’s home State of Nigeria, H.E Muhammadu Buhari. Views were also exchanged with the Representative of Equatorial Guinea to the African Union.

In addition, meetings were held with the Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma; AU Commissioner for Infrastructure and Energy, Dr. Elham Ibrahim; AU Commissioner for Political Affarirs, Aisha Abdullahi; the Executive Secretary of the Economic Commission for Africa (ECA), Dr. Carlos Lopes; the President of the African Development Bank (AfDB), Mr. Akinwumi Adesina; and the Chief Executive Officer of The New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD), Dr. Ibrahim Assane Mayaki.

President Aliu also met with the Minister of Transport of the Federal Republic of Ethiopia, H.E. Workneh Gebeyehu, senior management of the Ethiopian Civil Aviation Authority, Ethiopian Airlines and the Ethiopian Airport Enterprise, and was pleased to be provided a visit to Ethiopian airport, maintenance and training facilities.

Throughout these many discussions, President Aliu consistently emphasized the need to strengthen regional and sub-regional cooperation in Africa, in order to achieve the objectives of ICAO’s

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“No Country Left Behind” initiative and better enable African States to be able to access and prosper from the benefits of safe and rapid global air transport connectivity. There was also general agreement in many instances on the need for intensified cooperation between ICAO the many agencies now focused on optimizing African development cooperation and coordination.

“ICAO is grateful to Ethiopia for hosting this visit, and for the determined cooperation it and other African states offer towards finding multilateral solutions to civil aviation challenges,” Dr. Aliu commented.

“Like all ICAO Member States, African countries will face significant but surmountable challenges as the air transport sector doubles its passenger and flight volumes over the next 15 years. They will, however, be able to count on our cooperation to foster conditions that enable the necessary infrastructure modernization and skilled personal development to take place, consistent with our ‘No Country Left Behind’ priorities.”

 

Message from the World Customs Organization  International Customs Day 2016

This year’s International Customs Day heralds the launch of the WCO Year of Digital Customs, a year in which Customs administrations are encouraged to actively showcase and promote their use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) in order to collect and safeguard Customs duties, to control the flow of goods, people, conveyances, and money, and to secure cross-border trade from crime, including international terrorism which continues to rear its head across the globe.

Information and Communications Technology (ICT) is everywhere in today’s Customs workplace. From the use of ICT in office automation, to the use of the Internet to publish and disseminate information, to the use of automated clearance systems to make declarations, perform risk management, undertake validation and processing, and eventually to issue approvals, ICT has transformed the way that Customs and governments operate.

Under the slogan, “Digital Customs: Progressive Engagement”, we, as a Customs community, are signalling our aspiration to further develop digital solutions and services, making life easier for the trading community, other border agencies and Customs officers, and to further adopt enabling technologies, such as the use of big data, telematics and the cloud, to help increase operational performance, and to facilitate the reinvention of the way we do business.

To support WCO Members in their efforts to further adopt Digital Customs, the WCO has developed an extensive portfolio of instruments and applications. It recently undertook a mapping exercise to gain an appreciation of these ICT-related tools and their intended purpose. This mapping exercise goes hand-in-hand with ongoing work being undertaken by the WCO on the IT Guide for Executives that has been developed as a short handbook which succinctly addresses key aspects of ICT solution development and deployment for senior-level Customs administration officials, as well as officials with direct responsibility for managing ICT projects.

The technology landscape is changing rapidly, with a number of key trends emerging, such as cloud computing, mobile technologies, advanced analytics, and information management. Each of these technologies affects the role of Customs in different ways, and provides numerous opportunities to drive connectivity among Customs administrations and with trade operators and other border agencies, thereby increasing productivity which leads to greater economic growth.

Part of our work in the months to come will be to monitor and communicate best practices in topics as diverse as change management, human resource policies or information management. Over the course of 2016, I therefore invite all WCO Members to promote and share information on how they are adapting to the digital environment, how they are leveraging the potential of IT, and how they are implementing and using digital technologies to advance and achieve their objectives and respond to the expectations of traders, transport and logistic operators, and governments.

Wishing you all a very successful International Customs Day!

PODCAST5

IATA AGM IN DUBLIN

Dublin – The International Air Transport Association (IATA) 72nd Annual General Meeting (AGM) unanimously endorsed a resolution denouncing the illegal trade in wildlife and wildlife products and pledging to partner with government authorities and conservation organizations in the fight against the traffickers of endangered animals.

“The illegal wildlife trade threatens the survival of many endangered species, the local communities and businesses that depend on them, and poses a risk to health and safety. In line with our broad commitment to sustainability, the airline industry is reinforcing its role by helping to shut down the vile activities of poaching and trafficking,” said Tony Tyler, IATA’s Director General and CEO.

The resolution urges governments to commit additional resources to address illegal trafficking and calls on airlines to:

Increase passenger, client, customer and employee awareness about the nature, scale and consequences of the illegal wildlife trade

Partner with airports, freight forwarders and other stakeholders to work proactively with enforcement agencies and conservation organizations to address the problem

Consider the adoption of appropriate policies and procedures to discourage trafficking through awareness programs, information sharing and incident reporting

In March 2016 IATA was among the signatories to the Buckingham Palace Declaration supporting the United for Wildlife Transport Taskforce initiative of The Royal Foundation of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry. The resolution also encourages airlines individually to sign the Declaration.

In a recorded message to the AGM delegates, His Royal Highness Prince William the Duke of Cambridge urged the industry to unite in support of this cause.

“Many airlines, and your association IATA, have already signed the Buckingham Palace Declaration, pledging your support for our aims. IATA has been instrumental in helping set up workshops to raise awareness and educate front-line staff to spot smugglers in the act. The more of you that can join us in this work, the more powerful our deterrence activities will be. These criminal gangs are exploiting the incredible global aviation network you have built, and it needs nothing short of a global coalition to find them and stop them,” said the Duke of Cambridge.

“We all have a responsibility to protect our planet and its diverse ecology. I am aware of the important goals you have set for capping and reducing carbon emissions from civil air transport. This is to your credit and shows the power of aviation when it comes together as a force for good. Now I ask you to make a commitment to our planet’s wildlife, to join us and help save our most precious animals for future generations to enjoy,” said the Duke.

“We are honored that the Duke of Cambridge has recognized aviation’s role in the fight against illegal wildlife trafficking. Aviation has taken a responsible approach to its sustainable development. We are determined to ensure that the global air transport network will not be exploited for the nefarious purposes of illegal wildlife traders,” said Tyler.

The resolution furthers the airline industry’s heightened activity in this area. At the 71st IATA AGM last year, a memorandum of understanding was signed with the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES). Two awareness-raising workshops for airline and airport staff have been held at international airports in Nairobi and Bangkok. In addition, IATA joined the US Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Reducing Opportunities for Unlawful Transport of Endangered Species (ROUTES) Partnership. New guidance material for airlines has been published, and an IATA Environment Committee Wildlife Taskforce​ has been set up to monitor progress and provide advice on the next steps.

Airline Industry Pledges to Fight Against Wildlife Trafficking

Dublin – The International Air Transport Association (IATA) 72nd Annual General Meeting (AGM) unanimously endorsed a resolution denouncing the illegal trade in wildlife and wildlife products and pledging to partner with government authorities and conservation organizations in the fight against the traffickers of endangered animals.

“The illegal wildlife trade threatens the survival of many endangered species, the local communities and businesses that depend on them, and poses a risk to health and safety. In line with our broad commitment to sustainability, the airline industry is reinforcing its role by helping to shut down the vile activities of poaching and trafficking,” said Tony Tyler, IATA’s Director General and CEO.

The resolution urges governments to commit additional resources to address illegal trafficking and calls on airlines to:

Increase passenger, client, customer and employee awareness about the nature, scale and consequences of the illegal wildlife trade

Partner with airports, freight forwarders and other stakeholders to work proactively with enforcement agencies and conservation organizations to address the problem

Consider the adoption of appropriate policies and procedures to discourage trafficking through awareness programs, information sharing and incident reporting

In March 2016 IATA was among the signatories to the Buckingham Palace Declaration supporting the United for Wildlife Transport Taskforce initiative of The Royal Foundation of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry. The resolution also encourages airlines individually to sign the Declaration.

In a recorded message to the AGM delegates, His Royal Highness Prince William the Duke of Cambridge urged the industry to unite in support of this cause.

“Many airlines, and your association IATA, have already signed the Buckingham Palace Declaration, pledging your support for our aims. IATA has been instrumental in helping set up workshops to raise awareness and educate front-line staff to spot smugglers in the act. The more of you that can join us in this work, the more powerful our deterrence activities will be. These criminal gangs are exploiting the incredible global aviation network you have built, and it needs nothing short of a global coalition to find them and stop them,” said the Duke of Cambridge.

“We all have a responsibility to protect our planet and its diverse ecology. I am aware of the important goals you have set for capping and reducing carbon emissions from civil air transport. This is to your credit and shows the power of aviation when it comes together as a force for good. Now I ask you to make a commitment to our planet’s wildlife, to join us and help save our most precious animals for future generations to enjoy,” said the Duke.

“We are honored that the Duke of Cambridge has recognized aviation’s role in the fight against illegal wildlife trafficking. Aviation has taken a responsible approach to its sustainable development. We are determined to ensure that the global air transport network will not be exploited for the nefarious purposes of illegal wildlife traders,” said Tyler.

The resolution furthers the airline industry’s heightened activity in this area. At the 71st IATA AGM last year, a memorandum of understanding was signed with the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES). Two awareness-raising workshops for airline and airport staff have been held at international airports in Nairobi and Bangkok. In addition, IATA joined the US Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Reducing Opportunities for Unlawful Transport of Endangered Species (ROUTES) Partnership. New guidance material for airlines has been published, and an IATA Environment Committee Wildlife Taskforce​ has been set up to monitor progress and provide advice on the next steps.

IATA Welcomes New CO2 Emissions Standard for Aircraft

Geneva – The International Air Transport Association (IATA) welcomed the decision by representatives at the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) to agree a CO2 efficiency Standard for commercial aircraft.

The Standard, which has taken six years of painstaking negotiation and technical work, was approved by ICAO’s Committee on Aviation Environmental Protection. The Standard, to come into force from 2020, will ensure that CO2 emissions from new aircraft will have to meet a minimum baseline (defined as a maximum fuel burn per flight kilometre which must not be exceeded). From 2023 this will also apply to existing aircraft designs still in manufacture at that date.

“The agreement of this CO2 Standard is a vital and very welcome development. The CO2 Standard does not solve aviation’s climate challenge on its own, but it is an important element in our comprehensive strategy for tackling carbon emissions. The next milestone will be the implementation of a market-based measure to address CO2 emissions, which we hope to see agreed at the ICAO Assembly in September. Our shared industry goals are for carbon-neutral growth from 2020, and for a 50% cut in CO2 emissions by 2050. This CO2 standard is a significant milestone towards those targets, and proves that the industry and the world’s governments are working together to find a sustainable future for aviation,” said Tony Tyler, IATA’s Director General and CEO.

PODCAST6

News Brief: Airline Legal Experts to Address Crisis Management and Social Media

Montreal – The International Air Transport Association (IATA) is bringing together top experts from the legal field to discuss best practices on managing corporate risk and reputation in an era of news-making social media. This will be one of the highlights of the upcoming IATA Legal Symposium (Barcelona, Spain, 17-19 February 2016).

Aviation blogger Benet Wilson will headline a panel discussion with airline legal experts focused on the emerging challenges of crisis and reputation management in the age of ubiquitous information facilitated by social media. “Airlines operate all around the world, and around the clock. The speed and reach of social media have forced airlines to respond in real time to challenges, even before the facts are fully known,” notes panel moderator Anita Mosner, a partner at Holland & Knight, LLP.

The symposium will also feature a keynote address by Erwin Muller, Vice Chairman of the Dutch Safety Board and a presentation by Brian Pearce, IATA’s Chief Economist. Other issues on the symposium’s agenda include:

Latin America: Growth Despite Uncertainty

Rising Airport Charges in Europe and How They Impact Aviation and the Economy

Trends in Airline Acquisitions, Alliances and Cross-border Investments

“Just Culture” explained by the creator of that term, David Marx, as applied to both aviation companies and the regulatory agencies that oversee them

Is Big Data Helping the Airlines Reap Profit?

“With a reputation for insight, relevance and value among top airline legal counsel, private practitioners and government lawyers, the IATA Legal Symposium has become the world’s foremost international aviation law conference,” said Jeff Shane, IATA’s General Counsel. “This is a unique opportunity to meet with industry experts from almost 50 countries to discuss the robust issues that really have an impact on aviation law globally.”

News Brief: Reducing Fraudulent Payment Transactions

​Geneva –The International Air Transport Association (IATA) announced it is expanding its activities to prevent payment fraud in the air travel industry. Payment fraud costs the industry an estimated $858 million annually, approximately $639 million of which is borne by airlines and the remainder by other participants in the travel value chain, including travel agents. IATA is cooperating with Ypsilon Net AG to make IATA FraudClear available to airlines and travel agents.

While some airlines already use a range of systems to reduce fraud activity in their direct sales, IATA Fraud Manager offers a unique, fully-integrated and automated payment fraud detection and management solution for both travel agents and airlines.

“IATA is committed to helping the industry fight fraud. Our partnership with Ypsilon Net AG brings a modern fraud prevention solution that meets the needs of both airlines and travel agents to reduce fraud and increase the confidence in generating new sales via all available distribution channels,” said Aleks Popovich, IATA’s Senior Vice President Financial and Distribution Services.

By accessing information available in global distribution systems, IATA FraudClear is able to detect suspect transactions from as early as the booking request stage, and flag them or even cancel them as appropriate. It can notify the agent or airline of a suspicious booking, and automatically take action to void, suspend or cancel a ticket.

“You cannot segregate fraud occurring on airline direct channels from fraud generated through travel agency or online travel agency channels. IATA FraudClear combines ease of implementation and cost efficiency in a system that protects all channels effectively and provides full automation,” said Hans-Joachim Klenz, CEO of Ypsilon Net AG.

IATA FraudClear can also integrate systems including, but not limited to, IATA Perseuss and Ethoca and uses the provided information to enhance fraud scoring.

News Brief: Driving African Economies through the Power of Aviation

Aviation in National Economic Planning, Public-Private Partnerships and Funding Aviation main focus of IATA’s Aviation Day Africa Conference Agenda

Abuja – The International Air Transport Association (IATA) announced the theme for the 2016 Aviation Day Africa (Abuja, Nigeria, May 23 – May 24, 2016): “Driving African Economies through the Power of Aviation.”

The conference will bring together regional stakeholders to address current issues affecting aviation in Africa including the proliferation of taxes and charges, public-private partnerships, aviation, safety, security, next generation airports and market connectivity.

Aviation in Africa carries over 70 million passengers a year, supports more than 6.9 million jobs on the continent and generates over $80 billion in GDP. Over the next five years the African economy is forecast to grow at a strong 4.7% per year, well above the global average rate.  For the continent to realize its full economic potential, aviation – particularly commercial air transport – must be prioritized.

Raphael Kuuchi, Vice President Africa, IATA said, “Governments and organizations need to focus not only on national issues but also on the strategic development of pan-African aviation. Policies that promote investment in air transport infrastructure, improve safety and enhance air connectivity must be implemented. Aviation has the potential to make a much more significant contribution to economic growth and development within the continent if its power is unleashed.”

“The conference is a great opportunity for Africa’s key stakeholders to debate the industry’s most pressing issues and align actions to address the challenges. Through harnessing the power of aviation we will be helping to build a brighter future—not only for individual airlines and the air transport industry, but for all Africans, who will benefit with greater prosperity through jobs and opportunities,” said Hussein Dabbas, IATA’s Regional Vice President for Africa and The Middle East.

The Africa Day Conference speaker line-up reflects a broad spectrum of aviation stakeholders from governments, policy makes, regulators, airlines and manufactures.

Closer Collaboration with Governments to Tackle Threat of Terrorism

 Dublin – The International Air Transport Association (IATA) 72nd Annual General Meeting (AGM) unanimously adopted a resolution that denounces terrorism and calls for intensified cooperation among governments as well as with the air transport industry to keep flying secure.

“The foundation stone of security has been rocked by tragedy. In the last twelve months, terrorists have laid claim to atrocities involving Metrojet 9268, Daallo 159, and at Brussels Airport. These are grim reminders that aviation is vulnerable. Airlines rely on governments to keep passengers and employees secure as part of their responsibility for national security. And we are committed to working with them in that challenging task,” said Tony Tyler, IATA’s Director General and CEO.

The resolution calls for airlines to work together with airports and other key stakeholders to counter the risk of terrorist threats and urges governments to:

  • Work in partnership among themselves and with airlines to counter the risk of terrorist threats to aviation, recognizing ICAO’s critical role in this effort
  • Commit all possible government resources, particularly intelligence resources, to fighting the use of aviation for terrorist acts
  • Share relevant information to ensure that measures to prevent and respond to terrorist acts are appropriate and effective

The resolution reinforces the commitment of cooperation by the Global Travel Association Coalition (of which IATA is a member) following the Brussels attacks.

The recent attack on Brussels Airport highlighted the importance of security in airport public areas landside. Keeping this area secure is fully the responsibility of governments and the most effective defense is government intelligence used to stop terrorists long before they reach airport property.

Risk in airport public areas can be mitigated, however, with efficient processes:

  • IATA is working with Airports Council International (ACI) to expand the footprint of the joint Smart Security initiative to streamline airport screening with modern technology and a risk-based approach. This will bring the triple benefit of (1) reduced queues landside, (2) more effective screening, and (3) an improved passenger experience.
  • IATA is working with partners across the value chain to implement Fast Travel which will expedite passenger processing with self-service options. Internet check-in and home-printed baggage tags allow the passenger to arrive at the airport ready to travel, thereby reducing passenger dwell time in landside areas of the airport.

“Intelligence is the most powerful tool that governments have to protect their citizens wherever they are—at work, in their homes or while traveling. One of the biggest risk areas are large crowds. Industry is helping to bolster these efforts with practical measures—Smart Security and Fast Travel—that will mitigate risk by reducing airport queues,” said Tyler.

News Brief: Calling on African States to Harness the Power of Aviation

Abuja – The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has called on African governments to prioritize the development of aviation nationally and at a pan-African level to bolster economic growth and development.

Africa is set to be one of the fastest-growing aviation regions over the next 20 years, with annual expansion averaging nearly 5%. This opens up incredible economic opportunities for the continent’s 54 nations. By transporting some 70 million passengers annually, aviation already supports some 6.9 million jobs and $80 billion of economic activity on the African continent.

“Aviation has the potential to be a much greater strategic catalyst for growth if governments would stop milking the industry for taxes and enable it with smarter regulations focused on safety and the development of connectivity. The commitments are already there with the Abuja Declaration and the Yamoussoukro Decision. It’s time to achieve them in partnership with industry,” said Hussein Dabbas, IATA’s Regional Vice President for Africa and the Middle East.

“Enhanced Air Transport Connectivity is unarguably the key condition for any State’s progress and transformation. Studies have shown that there is clear correlation between connectivity and economic performance. In addition, improved connectivity attracts inward investment, which enables access to export markets and opens countries up to competitive forces. Air transport is a facilitator of international business and trade. Improved connectivity means more access to cities, markets, business and people as well as the integration into global supply chains, an important factor to attracting inward investment into any country,” Nigeria’s Minister for Aviation, Sen. Hadi Abubakar Sirika.

Sen Sirika and Dabbas was addressing the IATA African Aviation Day in Abuja, Nigeria. The event theme is ‘Driving African Economies through the Power of Aviation’. Key elements essential to air transport development in Africa are on the agenda: