The 1992 Fund Assembly has elected Mr Gaute Sivertsen of Norway as the next Director of the IOPC Funds.
Mr Sivertsen, who is 59, will leave his current role as the Director of the Maritime Department of the Norwegian Ministry of Trade, Industry and Fisheries to officially take up his duties as Director on 1 January 2022.
Well-known amongst Member States as a long-serving delegate representing Norway at meetings of the IOPC Funds and at various Committees of the International Maritime Organization for almost 30 years, Mr Sivertsen already has experience in a leading role at the organisation in his capacity as 1992 Fund Assembly Chair, a position he held for over 10 years.
His experience working as a lawyer for various ministries throughout his career has led him to work with international and domestic maritime law and policy covering a wide range of areas, including maritime compensation, seafarer issues and maritime safety and security.
Following his election Mr Sivertsen expressed his gratitude to the 1992 Fund Member States for the confidence and trust they had shown by electing him. He thanked the two candidates, both existing members of the Secretariat, for submitting their candidacies and emphasised that he would look forward to working with both Mrs Liliana Monsalve (Colombia) and Mr Thomas Liebert (France) in the future.
The new Director took the opportunity when addressing Member States on the last day of the IOPC Funds’ annual meeting on Friday 5 November, to confirm his commitment to the organisation, outlining his intention to ‘serve the Member States and victims of oil pollution, defend the Funds’ interests and adapt to changing needs’.
He went on to say, ‘I look forward to engaging with you all – the Member States; the members of the Secretariat, industry and other stakeholders on how best to face the challenges ahead’.
The outgoing Director, Mr José Maura, who has served 10 years as the Director and a further 15 years within the Secretariat, joined Member States and the Chairs of the IOPC Funds’ governing bodies in congratulating Mr Sivertsen, wishing him well for the future and commenting that, in his view, there was no doubt that having been an exceptional Chair for the organisation in the past, Mr Sivertsen would prove to be an excellent Director who would work together with Member States and the international maritime community to further strengthen the international liability and compensation regime.