Singapore-International Maritime Organization (IMO) Third Country Training Programme
Singapore-International Maritime Organization (IMO) Third Country Training Programme
Providing capacity-building assistance to International Maritime Organization member states to enable universal implementation of IMO instruments


The International Maritime Organization (IMO) and its Member States, includ- ing Singapore, are actively working to fulfil the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and related SDGs. To this end, it is necessary to ensure that ship- ping remains safe, sustainable and secure to support global trade. IMO Member States need to be able to uniformly implement IMO instruments to enhance mar- itime navigational safety and promote efficient and sustainable international shipping.

Towards a Solution

Singapore is a firm believer in developing human capital for the international maritime community through capacity-building. Thus, the Singapore-IMO Third Country Training Programme (TCTP) was established to disseminate the technical knowledge needed to operate a safe and efficient shipping industry so that IMO member states can implement international maritime regulations and standards.

On 1 September 1998, a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was established under the TCTP that supported the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore to work with the IMO to provide capacity-building courses for countries. Courses cover implementation of relevant IMO instruments, including those that pro- tect the marine environment through the prevention of pollution from ships, and address SDGs 14.1, 14.2, 14.A, 17.16 and 17.17. These courses have allowed for the sharing of best practices and knowledge transfer, with participants applying the knowledge gained in their respective countries to bridge information gaps and better implement regulations. The courses have also been useful to pre- pare countries for the mandatory IMO Member State Audit Scheme that reviews country implementation of IMO instruments. The MOU was the first of its kind by institutionalizing a Member State’s commitment to assisting the implementation of the IMO Integrated Technical Co-operation Programme (ITCP). Since then, several countries and maritime organizations have entered into similar MOUs with IMO.

Under this MOU, the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore has trained more than 2,100 maritime officials from over 90 countries, including Small Island Developing States (SIDS) and from regions that include Asia, Africa, the Americas, the Caribbean, the Middle East and the Pacific Islands.

New TCTP courses have been rolled out over the years to help countries understand and adhere to new regulations adopted at IMO, while existing courses have been continually refined and updated to meet the evolving needs of participants.

On 25 April 2018, building on this MOU, Singapore launched an enhanced five-year technical cooperation and training package valued at US $5 million for IMO and its member states. The package comprises fellowships, scholarships, workshops and courses to further enhance capacity building and human resource development for the international maritime community.


Contact Information

Chong Lee Fee, Assistant Director, Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) Academy

Countries involved


Supported by

International Maritime Organization

Implementing Entities

Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore Academy and IMO

Project Status


Project Period


Primary SDG

14 - Life Below Water

Secondary SDGs

17 - Partnerships for the Goals

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