Photo credit: Della Russel
The IOPC Funds were invited to participate in the regional bi-annual GI WACAF Conference, from 7 to 10 November 2022, in Accra, Ghana.
The Director, Gaute Sivertsen, addressed one of the main objectives of the event related to the challenges of oil spill preparedness and response in the region by giving an overview of the international liability and compensation regime for oil pollution damage. IOPC Funds Claims Manager, Mark Homan, referred to the key Conventions covering liability and compensation applicable in the West Central and Southern African States and the status of the ratification of those conventions in the GIWACAF States. He emphasised the role and responsibilities of each stakeholder likely to be involved in the response operations and the importance of collaboration between parties involved. Mr Homan also assisted ITOPF with the exercise they ran in which the participants responded to a theoretical maritime incident and submitted claims following that incident.
The conference brought together representatives from the 22 African partner countries of the GI WACAF project, providing an opportunity to share knowledge and experiences and to identify strategic priorities for the next GI WACAF conference (2023-2024).
GI WACAF is a joint project between IMO and the oil industry, through IPIECA, aimed at improving the level of preparedness and response to oil spills in the Western and Central Africa region (http://www.giwacaf.net/). The IOPC Funds fully support this initiative and looks forward to contributing to further training activities and exercises in the region to raise awareness on the importance of the international Conventions on compensation for marine oil pollution damage.