7th International Maritime Security Conference

The 7th International Maritime Security Conference (IMSC) was held in a hybrid format with participants from 28 countries. The theme of this year's IMSC is "Safe and Secure Seas – Maritime Security in the New Normal" and it is the first large-scale maritime conference since the onset of the pandemic. The aim of the conference was to generate discussions and conversations on how navies and maritime organisations from around the world can continue to work together and maintain stability at sea, despite the difficulties or disruptions brought since COVID-19.
Established in 2009, the IMSC is co-organised by the Republic of Singapore Navy and the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS). The conference brings together navy chiefs, coast guard director-generals, policy makers, strategic thinkers and maritime stakeholders to exchange ideas and discuss ways to enhance and foster mutual security in our maritime commons.

Chief of Navy RADM Aaron Beng delivering his opening address.

Chief of Navy RADM Aaron Beng delivering his opening address.

Session 1: Preserving Peace and Stability in the Post-Pandemic Maritime Commons

The Asia Pacific continues to host important sea lanes and the safety and security of regional waters is important for the countries in Southeast Asia and beyond. This session discusses the importance of this region and its sea lanes, and the role of the navy in maintaining peace and stability that safeguards our maritime commons.

Vice Admiral Wang Houbin, Deputy Commander People's Liberation Army Navy
Vice Admiral Kay-Achim Schönbach, Chief of Navy, German Navy
Vice Admiral Nick Hine, Second Sea Lord, Royal Navy
Admiral Karambir Singh, Chief of the Naval Staff, Indian Navy 

Prof. Ralf Emmers, Dean RSIS

Session 2: Maritime Connectivity and Resilience in the Post-Pandemic Maritime Environment

Notwithstanding the challenges posed by COVID-19 pandemic, it is important to ensure that trade continues to flow unimpeded, and that our seaports remain open to support the viability and integrity of supply chains globally.  This session discusses core priorities and strong partnership amongst maritime stakeholders.

Ms Quah Ley Hoon, Chief Executive, Maritime and Port Authority (Virtual)
Vice Admiral Prof. Dr. Amarulla Octavian, Rector, Indonesian Defence University (Virtual)
Rear Admiral Christopher Smith, Deputy Chief of Navy, Royal Australian Navy
Mr Michael Phoon, Secretary General, Federation of ASEAN Shipowners Association

Amb. Ong Keng Yong, Executive Deputy Chairman, RSIS

Session 3: Rules-Based Maritime Order in the 'New Normal'

The increasingly complex maritime domain underscores the importance of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), as an international agreement to help maintain order and stability at sea. The session discusses different perceptions of a rules-based order, and underscores the importance of upholding the principles of law, rules and regulations including UNCLOS.

Judge Paik Jin-Hyun, International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea
H. E. Amb Arif Havas Oegroseno, Indonesian Ambassador to Germany
Snr Col (Ret) Zhou Bo, Senior Fellow, Center for International Security and Strategy, Tsinghua University, and China Forum Expert  

Prof. Tommy Koh, Former President, UN Conference on the Laws of the Sea

Session 4: Maritime Security and Cooperation in the Asia Pacific

The safety and security of the seas can only be maintained through a cooperative network consisting of all maritime stakeholders. The maritime community must also work closely together to innovate and find practical solutions to combat the challenges at hand moving ahead. This session discusses practical cooperative measures, and explores the way ahead for cooperation in maritime security for our region.

Admiral Michael Gilday, Chief of Naval Operations, United States Navy
Admiral Pierre Vandier, Chief of Staff, French Navy
Admiral Yamamura Hiroshi, Chief of Staff, Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force
Admiral Tan Sri Mohammed Reza, Chief of Navy, Royal Malaysian Navy

Prof. Geoffrey Till, Advisor to Maritime Security Programme, RSIS