Who Are IMO and IATA?

most important organizations in international shipping
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The fact is that the world of today could not exist without International shipping and knowing the regulations and the processes that are involved in the shipping of goods around the world is of vital importance. There are two very important organizations that have been and are of major support to the shipping industry: IMO and IATA.

Who Governs Safety and Security in International Shipping?

The IMO and the IATA are two major organizations that set the rules and standards for safety and security in international transportation. They each play their own significant role in helping to regulate ocean and air shipping standards.

IMO – International Maritime Organization

The responsibility of maritime safety and security of the seas lies with the IMO, or the International Maritime Organization. This entity also aids in preventing the pollution of the seas, get involved in legal international affairs, trainings, conferences, etc.

As an agency of the United Nations, the IMO is “the global standard-setting authority” in charge of regulating the safety and environmental performance of all international shipments. The main role of the I.M.O. is to develop a framework for the shipping industry that can be used universally and offers an equally fair standard that all import and export companies can easily follow.

Since the shipping industry is of a true international nature, and cannot be regulated by any one country or government, it requires a regulatory entity to set the standards and then implement the rules worldwide. When it comes to ocean shipping, the IMO is the governing power that develops, enforces, and maintains maritime regulations. Their first conference took place in 1960, which led to the creation of the International Convention on Safety and Life at Sea (or SOLAS) treaty. As a result, more conventions and international conferences took place and continue throughout the years.

One of the many responsibilities of IMO is also maritime security, which became a top priority following the hijacking of the Italian cruise ship Achille Lauro, in 1985. The organization took necessary strides to implement security guidelines that would help prevent future unlawful acts against passengers and crew members aboard ships.

Another area the IMO is responsible for is pollution and environmental issues related to the sea. To accomplish this mission they work to develop universally understood guidelines, like sustainable maritime transportation concepts, and international codes, like the Code of Safety Practice for Solid Bulk Cargoes (BC Code), or the International Maritime Dangerous Goods (IMDG) Code.

IATA – International Air Transport Association

As the name suggests, the IATA is the global authority on the world’s air transportation, representing 82% of the world’s aviation traffic. The association was founded in 1945, in Havana, Cuba, and today it extends to some 280 members from 120 nations around the world. The IATA is a conduit for inter-airline collaborations, helping to promote safe, secure, and economical air services since its inception. Reliability is paramount when coordinating airline transportation, so it is a fundamental priority of the IATA to ensure global standards for airlines, both passenger and cargo.

Aside from helping to ensure the welfare of any person aboard any aircraft, as well as the integrity of any merchandise, the IATA helps create regulations that make the transportation of goods by air safe and straightforward. For example, IATA’s Dangerous Goods Regulations (DGR) is the trusted source for correctly preparing, handling, and accepting dangerous goods shipments by air.

The IATA’s support to airline industries is vast and entails duties like being responsible for the creation of identification codes for the airlines – which are essential for identification of an airline, destinations, and essential documents – as well as codes for international airports that are used to help develop Air Traffic Management technology.

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We Can Help Educate You on Import and Export Regulations

At Promptus LLC, we recognize the importance of these organizations, and we strive to uphold and abide by their guidelines and rules. Our dedicated team works closely with all clients to ensure that they are familiar with the various organizations, laws, regulations, and applicable duties that might be necessary for a successful shipment. With over 15 years of freight forwarding experience under our belt, we can help you sort through any complicated documents or shipping routes while helping you understand every step of the process. Contact us today to help you evaluate your shipping needs.