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AS world leaders met in Cornwall, England, for the G7, the first ever meeting of the equivalent maritime bodies, titled M7, took place on 9 June, organised by the UK Chamber of Shipping.

The meeting was chaired by the president of the host nation, John Denholm of the UK Chamber of Shipping.

Delegates from the shipowner associations of the G7, plus those from Australia, India, South Africa and South Korea, were joined by The secretary-general of the ICS, chief executive and secretary-general of BIMCO and a representative from ECSA.

Maritime Australia Limited CEO Teresa Lloyd said, “MIAL is pleased to represent Australia on the international stage to ensure that our members are kept fully up to date with the latest moves elsewhere and to provide an Australian perspective and insight on key issues.

“The recent M7 gathering was an important opportunity to share views and update on developments across the M7+ nations and peak international shipping representative bodies ICS and BIMCO. ”

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There was universal agreement at the meeting that more investment is needed from governments and industry to develop the technologies for a cleaner and greener shipping industry and that the G7 governments should be urged to back the shipping industry’s proposed $5bn R&D decarbonisation fund.

Delegates also agreed that more work was needed to help develop digital documentation to facilitate an increase in global trade as the world recovers from COVID-19.

The crew change crisis was discussed, and the extraordinary work seafarers have done over the past 15 months supporting global trade under extremely challenging conditions was noted. The meeting called for governments of the G7 to follow the lead of the United States, Canada and other countries in prioritising vaccinations for seafarers.

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