AUSTRALIA has resigned from the Asian Shipowners’ Association after 30+ years as a founding member.

Maritime Industry Australia Ltd handed in its notice at ASA’s AGM in Hong Kong yesterday [28 May] with a MIAL spokesperson saying this was “a result of an inability to reach agreement on the ongoing terms of our membership”.

“As not only a long-standing, but an inaugural member of ASA, we would like to extend our gratitude to ASA and its members for their engagement and friendship over the years under the ASA umbrella,” MIAL said.

“We look forward to continuing these important relationships directly with the national shipowner associations of the Asia Pacific region through alternative networks. We wish the ASA the very best and of course we keep an open mind about the nature of our future relationship.”

ASA, originally the Asian Shipowners’ Forum, was established in April 1992 with MIAL’s predecessor of the time a foundation member. ASA now claims to be the largest shipowner body in the world, representing more than one in two ships afloat today.

“ASA thanked MIAL for their contributions and support all those years and hoped that MIAL would rejoin ASA in future,” ASA said in a statement.

At the AGM the chairperson of Federation of ASEAN Shipowners’ Association, Carmelita Hartoto, was appointed as the 34th ASA chairperson.

At the same time the Cook Islands Ship Owners Association (CISOA) was welcomed as the association’s newest member. 

According to the Official Guide to Ship & Yacht Registries, the Cook Islands fleet is comprised of 210 vessels including 37 SOLAS Ships with a combined gross tonnage of 116,453 GT, and over 60 yachts.

The Cook Islands Register is considered a flag of convenience by the ITF. The Islands are a member of IMO, FAO, UNESCO and the UN Environmental Conference.