International Maritime Organization

International Maritime Organization

Summary of International Maritime Organization

A specialized agency of the United Nations concerned with maritime safety and protection of the marine environment. The IMO was created as the result of the United Nations Maritime Conference of 1948; the convention creating the IMO did not, however, come into force until 1958. Prior to 1982, the organization was known as the Inter- Governmental Maritime Consultative Organization. The organization is governed by an assembly, which meets every two years, and in which even member state (121 members and 1 associate as of 1981) enjoys one vote. Between assembly sessions, a council of twenty-four members, elected by the assembly, directs the affairs of the organization.

Since its inception, the IMO has promoted conventions and has adopted numerous codes relating to maritime affairs. Details of IMO agreements in force can be found in this Encyclopedia.

In 1984, the membership of the International Maritime Organization was as follows:

Algeria Equatorial Guinea

Angola Ethiopia

Argentina Fiji

Australia Finland

Austria France

Bahamas Gabon

Bahrain Gambia

Bangladesh German Democratic

Barbados Republic

Belgium German Federal

Benin Republic

Brazil Ghana

Bulgaria Greece

Burma Guatemala

Cameroon Guinea

Canada Guinea-Bissau

Cape Verde Guyana

Chile Haiti

China Honduras

Colombia Hungary

Congo Iceland

Costa Rica India

Cuba Indonesia

Cyprus Iran

Czechoslovakia Iraq

Denmark Ireland

Djibouti Israel

Dominica Italy

Dominican Republic Ivory Coast

Ecuador Jamaica

Egypt Japan

El Salvador Jordan

Kampuchea Korea (Republic of)

Kenya Kuwait Lebanon Liberia Libya

Madagascar Malaysia Maldives Malta Mauritania Mauritius Mexico Morocco Mozambique Nepal

Netherlands New Zealand Nicaragua Nigeria Norway Oman Pakistan Panama

Papua New Guinea Peru

Philippines Poland Portugal Qatar Romania St. Lucia

St. Vincent and Grenadines Saudi Arabia Senegal Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Somalia Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Surinam Sweden Switzerland Syria Tanzania Thailand Togo

Trinidad and Tobago




United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Venezuela

Yemen (Arab Republic) Yemen (Democratic Republic)



(Main Author: William J. Miller)

Introduction to International Maritime Organization

International Maritime Organization (IMO), specialized agency of the United Nations established in 1958 and headquartered in London. The IMO promotes international cooperation on technical matters affecting shipping; recommends and encourages adoption of the highest standards of maritime safety and efficient navigation; and fosters international action to prevent pollution of the sea. In 1992, for example, the IMO authorized new rules for tanker design aimed at reducing the risk of oil spills.” (1)

International Maritime Organization (IMO) in International Trade

Meaning of International Maritime Organization (IMO), according to the Dictionary of International Trade (Global Negotiator): Established as a specialized United Nations agency in 1948 and headquartered in London, England, the IMO facilitates cooperation on technical matters affecting merchant shipping and traffic, including improve maritime safety dangerous goods and prevention of marine pollution. Website.

International Maritime Organization

Embracing mainstream international law, this section on international maritime organization explores the context, history and effect of the area of the law covered here.


See Also

  • International Organization
  • Foreign Relations
  • Organization
  • United Nations
  • United Nations System
  • UN Agency


Further Reading

  • The entry “international maritime organization” in the Parry and Grant Encyclopaedic Dictionary of International Law (currently, the Encyclopaedic Dictionary of International Law, 2009), Oxford University Press


Notes and References

Guide to International Maritime Organization

IMO – International Maritime Organization

Further Reading


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *