Jamaica was recently elected to chair the Regional Task Force on Control and Management of Ships’ Ballast Water and Sediments in the Wider Caribbean Region. The Task Force was the outcome of a week-long meeting held in Panama City on December 7-10, 2009, as part of the joint Global Environment Facility (GEF), the International Maritime Organization (IMO) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) GloBallast Partnership programme.
According to Bertrand Smith, Legal Director at the Maritime Authority of Jamaica, who was elected to Chair this task force, “the main idea of the Task Force is to steer the region in the development and adoption of a strategy and action plan for the implementation of the Ballast Water Management Convention.”
“Jamaica was chosen as a lead partnering country in the Region to be used as a model for implementing the Convention.” Mr. Smith Explained. As such the country is well advanced in preparations towards having the necessary policy and legal framework in place to give full effect to the requirements of the Convention and is therefore in a position to assist the other countries in the Region.