The Council asked IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim to consider whether future meetings could be held in a digital-only format. Image Credit: IMO
An extraordinary session of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) Council has asked Secretary General Kitack Lim to consider how the UN body's meetings can be held online while the COVID-19 pandemic prevents meetings in person.
Several meetings scheduled to be held at the IMO's London headquarters over the past month have been postponed, and environmental groups have written to the UN body asking it to continue holding meetings in an online-only format to avoid allowing progress on emissions regulations to slow down.
The council meeting itself was held via correspondence, the IMO said in an emailed statement Friday.
"The Council requested the Secretary-General to submit reports to a future session of the Council on: the establishment of a system that enables IMO staff to work remotely without affecting their productivity; and the possibility of holding meetings by teleconference, including the development of relevant procedures for such meetings, by the Council, and related budgetary implications, in view of the uncertainty of the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic," the IMO said.