IMO Assembly to decide on Finland’s membership in the Council

Ministry of Transport and Communications
Publication date 24.11.2023 11.45 | Published in English on 27.11.2023 at 15.09
Press release
Photo: Ville Suni, Arctia / LVM

The Assembly of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) will meet in London from 27 November to 6 December 2022. Finland is a candidate for membership in the IMO Council. The configuration of the incoming Council will be subject to a vote by the Assembly on 1 December. 

Finland has campaigned for Council membership since December 2022. 

The campaign has three themes:

1. Sustainable shipping – a necessity and an opportunity
2. New technologies – harnessing the potential to promote safety and wellbeing
3. Education and equality at the heart of maritime transport.

As a Member of the Council, Finland’s opportunities to promote these goals, among other things, would improve.

The Assembly, which meets every two years, is IMO’s highest decision-making body. It decides on the work programme and budget for the following years and elects the Council.

Minister Ranne to advance the campaign in London

Minister of Transport and Communications Lulu Ranne will attend the Assembly and advance the campaign in its final stretch in London on 27 and 28 November.

“Maritime transport is important for our economy and for all Finns. As a Member of the Council, we could better promote safe and fair shipping,” Minister Ranne says.

“In many ways, Finland is at the forefront of maritime transport. For example, we have versatile technical expertise that we export to the world,” Minister says.

She will deliver Finland’s address to the Assembly. The address will focus on fair international regulation in the sector and on improving the working conditions of seafarers. 

In London, Ranne will meet IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim, Minister of Works and Transport of Namibia John Mutorwa, Minister of Infrastructure and Water Management of the Netherlands Mark Harbers and Parliamentary Under-Secretary Anthony Browne of the United Kingdom responsible for aviation and transport emissions.

Minister Ranne will lead the Finnish delegation to the Assembly.  The delegation consists of representatives from the Ministry of Transport and Communications, the Transport and Communications Agency Traficom, the Embassy of Finland in London, the Finnish Border Guard, and the Regional Government of Åland. 

IMO is responsible for international regulation in maritime transport

IMO plays a key role in developing international rules for maritime transport. The Council, consisting of IMO Member States, provides comprehensive guidance for the Organization’s work between the Assembly sessions.

IMO currently has 175 Member States. Finland has been a Member since 1959, and a Council Member most recently in 1998–1999 and 2000–2001.

Next steps

The Assembly will vote on the forthcoming Council Member States on 1 December. The Assembly will elect 40 Member States to the Council in three Categories: (a), (b) and (c). Finland seeks membership in Category (c), which will have 20 States.


Jani Haapsaari, Senior Specialist, tel. +358 50 500 1903, [email protected]

Anita Mäkinen, Deputy Permanent Representative of Finland to the IMO +358 401 624 592, [email protected]