Organised annually by the International Maritime Organization (IMO), the worldwide event focused on gender equality, one of the 17 goals that underpin the United Nations sustainable development agenda targets to be reached by 2030.
The IMO has been focusing on this theme throughout 2019, with the need to empower women and promote diversity in the maritime community, to ensure they have equal opportunities of employment and provided the same career progression free of discrimination.
Ongoing activities to promote the role of women in the maritime industry include: facilitating the access of women to high-level technical training in developing countries; creating the environment to identify and select women for career opportunities in maritime administrations, ports and maritime training institutes: and facilitating the establishment of professional women in maritime associations, particularly in developing countries.
The ITF has been working closely with affiliates to promote best practice to effectively promote and inspire the training and recruitment of women within the industry.
The ITF Women's department is actively supporting all ITF maritime sections to address barriers in the recruitment and retention of women maritime workers, to end gender-based violence and occupational segregation and to attract women to become a part of the global maritime community.
IMO secretary-general Kitack Lim said: “… a new generation of strong and talented women are … proving that in today's world the maritime industries are for everyone. It's not about your gender, it's about what you can do."
Data on the number of women employed in the maritime sector will be collected and analysed later this year in a study involving the IMO and WISTA (the Women's International Shipping & Trading Association).
Next year’s World Maritime Day theme will be "Sustainable shipping for a sustainable planet".