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Friday, June 25, 2021 

In his message on the Day of the Seafarer, 25 June, IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim said it is more important than ever not only to acknowledge the efforts that seafarers have made to keeping the supply chain open despite extremely challenging conditions, but also to ensure that the future being built is one that is fair to them - hence the theme chosen for IMO's 2021 Day of the Seafarer campaign, 'A Fair Future for Seafarers'.

General Secretary Lim said: "Our 2021 Day of the Seafarer campaign builds on the progress to support seafarers on pandemic-related challenges. It aims to draw global attention to all areas where fairness is important. This includes a safe, secure environment on ships, reasonable working conditions, fair treatment in all situations, as well as respect for the rights of all - regardless of race, gender and religion. I am especially pleased that IMO will be amplifying the voices of seafarers themselves as they discuss what a fairer future would look like to them under the hashtag #FairFuture4Seafarers. Seafarers, we are listening – and we will make sure you are heard."

UN Secretary-General António Guterres said: "Seafarers must be recognised as key workers who deliver an essential service, and be given access to transit and travel. Seafarers must also have equitable access to vaccines, as nobody is safe until everyone is safe... We must acknowledge that the future of world trade depends on the people who operate ships. All stakeholders must work together to ensure a fair future for seafarers."

IMO asked seafarers what this fair future means to them, receiving more than 16,000 responses. When asked "who should be responsible for a fair future for seafarers?", a majority 54% of some 3,000 respondents answered that it must be a shared responsibility between IMO/ILO and Governments; shipping companies; and seafarers.

Secretary-General Lim encouraged all stakeholders in the maritime sector to continue the conversation, paying special attention to the voices of the seafarers themselves.

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