Day of Seafarer 2020: History, significance and campaign for this year

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New Delhi (NVI): Almost 90 per cent of the world’s goods trade are transported by ships and behind these ships are the seafarers who are working hard to ensure that everything runs smoothly, according to International Maritime Organization (IMO).

Each year on June 25, the Day of the Seafarer is celebrated to pay respect to seafarers and sailors who help the entire world function by conducting sea transport. The annual ay of the Seafarer will be celebrating its 10th anniversary this year.

In 2010, the International Maritime Organization, which is a specialised agency of the United Nations responsible for regulating shipping, decided to designate June 25 as International Day of the Seafarer. It was done to highlight the fact that almost everything we use in our daily lives is either directly or indirectly affected by sea transport.

This year, seafarers are on the frontline of the COVID-19 pandemic, playing an essential role in maintaining the flow of vital goods, such as food, medicines and medical supplies.

However, the crisis has led to difficult working conditions for seafarers, including uncertainties and difficulties about port access, re-supply, crew changeovers and repatriation.

The Day of the Seafarer campaign calls on Member States to recognize seafarers as key workers–to provide them with the support, assistance and travel options open to all key workers during the pandemic.

The campaign pays tribute to seafarers, acknowledging their sacrifice and the issues they face. In support, IMO will be holding a webinar on the theme “Seafarers are key workers: Essential to shipping, essential to the world”

-RJV