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Cypriot elected IMO Assembly Vice President
2003-11-25 09:37:39

Nicosia, Nov 25 (CNA) -- Cyprus Ministry of Communications and Works Permanent Secretary Simeon Matsis has been elected as 1st Vice-President of the 23rd General Assembly of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO).

Speaking to CNA, Communications and Works Minister Kikis Kazamias said that this distinction is very important for Cyprus' bid to be elected in the IMO Council in its category, as well as for its effort to remove the country's registry from The Paris Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on Port State Control black list.

Matsis has been elected as 1st Vice President unanimously from all representatives of the member states in the Assembly, including Turkey. Edgardo B. Espiritu of Philippines was elected as 2nd Vice-Chairman and Mel Cappe, High Commissioner for Canada, was elected as President of the Assembly.

''This election constitutes an acknowledgement of the work done during the last two years by Cyprus' permanent representatives'', Kazamias said praising the cooperation between the Communications and Works Ministry and the Cyprus Maritime Council.

Cyprus will also apply for a position in the IMO Council in category C.

''We believe that our election as Vice President of the Assembly would prove to be helpful in our bid to be elected in the IMO Presidium', Kazamias noted.

Kazamias told CNA that Cyprus' election as Vice President of the IMO General Assembly would facilitate the island's effort to remove the Cypriot registry from the Paris MOU.

''The results of the last three years allow us to ask such a thing, because we have improved our security checks'', Kazamias said, noting that by the end of the year Cyprus will be able to carry out 25% of the security checks, a percentage required by the EU.

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