During an official visit to the International Maritime Law Institute (IMLI) where he was welcomed by the Director of the Institute Prof David Attard, Minister Carmelo Abela applauded the work being undertaken by the Institute which offers different programmes of study ranging from courses on maritime, environmental and shipping law, to a degree of Doctor of Philosophy in International Maritime Law.
The Minister hailed the presence of the Institute under the auspices of the IMO and its role as a centre of excellence in terms of capacity building in the field of international maritime law, through the training it provides to legal advisers in the law of the sea, marine environmental law, and shipping law.
Minister Abela also recalled the 50th anniversary since Malta, through its Permanent Representative at the United Nations Arvid Pardo, had tabled a proposal at the United Nations which set in motion a 15-year process culminating in the adoption of the 1982 Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS). Through its initiative, Malta is considered as the pioneer of UNCLOS and its outcomes. Malta’s historic and important role in the law of the sea were acknowledged by the students who took part in an open discussion with the Minister.
Minister Abela underscored the significance of commemorating this and other important anniversaries which have left an indelible mark on the history of humankind and which continue to guide us in today’s world. In this respect he also said that 2018 would be another exciting year since Malta will also be commemorating the 30th anniversary of the Malta initiative for the proposal for an intergovernmental panel on climate change.
The Minister also spoke of other proud endeavours being taken forward by the ministry, such as the setting up of the Commonwealth Small State Centre of Excellence, which will serve as a capacity-building centre in relation to environmental, climate change and disaster risk preparedness.