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Home > Embassy News > 2013
Message from H.E. Ambassador Liu Xiaoming

I warmly congratulate the 30th anniversary of the World Maritime University (WMU)!

The Chinese philosopher, Confucius, said, ‘At thirty, I stood firm.’ In the same spirit, the WMU at thirty is becoming mature and well-established. Three decades ago the International Maritime Organization (IMO) heeded the call of developing nations for development and cooperation and founded the WMU in Malmo, Sweden.

Since its creation, the WMU has made a significant difference. Thanks to the WMU, technical cooperation between the IMO and developing nations has institutionalized, and continues to expand in scale and quality of support. Such cooperation has benefited many more developing nations.

The WMU has offered a platform for exchanges amongst the global maritime community. It has laid a solid foundation for the fair, equitable and balanced growth of the global shipping industry.

The creation of the WMU has promoted the worldwide effective implementation of standards for maritime safety and the marine environment. Moreover, it has played a big role in ensuring the formulation of these standards can meet the concerns of different countries.

Over the three decades, the WMU has produced nearly 3500 graduates for 163 countries around the world; many of them now assume positions of great influence in the maritime industry.

China is one of the main beneficiaries of the WMU. The Chinese government sent the first students to the WMU in 1985. Thirty years on, the WMU has trained 170 maritime and senior shipping executives for China. These graduates have become a new positive force in the Chinese maritime industry; the WMU gave them a global perspective and advanced managerial expertise. In turn this has greatly advanced the Chinese maritime industry and facilitated its integration within the world maritime community.

The Chinese government attaches great importance to cooperation with the WMU. In 2005, the WMU, China’s Shanghai Maritime University and Dalian Maritime University launched joint post graduate programmes respectively on Maritime Safety and Environmental Management, and International Transport and Logistics. By the end of 2012 graduates from these two programmes had totaled more than 500; they are all high calibre professionals whose skills are in high demand within the Chinese maritime shipping industry.

Returning kindness and help is a valued tradition of China. Over the years, the Chinese government has provided the WMU with assistance in cash and in kind within its capacity to improve its teaching facilities. At the same time, through the above joint programmes China has helped train a contingent of senior maritime shipping executives for other developing countries in the region.

We now live in a world where the importance of knowledge economy can never be overemphasized. At the forefront of it is information technology. Science and technology are advancing by leaps and bounds and economic globalization continues to gain momentum. At the same time the world shipping industry is also undergoing a major transformation. For these trends and changes, innovation and talent are vital for the industry’s future. This means that on its thirtieth birthday the WMU is positioned to play a pivotal role in the future of world maritime development. The WMU has the credentials to take on these very important responsibilities as it has become one of the leading international centres of excellence for advanced maritime education.

Looking ahead, I hope that the WMU will stay committed to responding to needs of developing nations, particularly for capacity building. Moreover, I hope that WMU will continue to be a main source of intellectual support for the healthy and sustainable development of global maritime transport. The Chinese government will, as always, join other IMO members in supporting and helping the WMU!

I wish WMU even greater success as it develops in the coming decades!

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