World Maritime Day

Every September 28th, #WorldMaritimeDay commemorates the indispensable sector of ocean transportation, fishing and commerce that connects the planet. Designated in 1978 by the United Nations shipping agency IMO, this day appreciates seafarers’ contributions while advocating maritime priorities.

World Maritime Day

The History of World Maritime Day

Established in 1978

The first international celebrations occurred in Woods Hole, Massachusetts using this late-September date aligned with typical northern hemisphere sailing seasons.

Recognizing Global Trade

The UN aims to acknowledge shipping’s role in facilitating over 80% of international trade by volume, vital lifelines for import/export of energy, food, medicine and more.

Promoting Safety and Sustainability

Each year centers around an IMO-selected theme focusing issues like pollution prevention, enhanced navigation tools and improving seafarers’ welfare.

Maritime Impacts on Society

Economic Engine

Transport via ocean vessels supports employment for over 1 billion people globally and generates trillions annually in economic activity and tax revenue.

Cultural Exchange

Maritime journeys have historically opened trade routes exposing populations to foreign ideas fostering cultural understanding between lands.

Energy and Food Security

Bulk shipments maintain daily energy needs and address fluctuating demands, lessening volatility in commodity pricing through reliable logistics.

Environmental Stewardship

Evolving “green technologies” aim reducing carbon footprints to sustain blue planet benefits including carbon sequestration and biodiversity in waters.

World Maritime Day Events

Conferences and Forums

Panels of industry experts and regulators discuss trending themes, law and emerging issues to promote safety standards worldwide.

Port Visits and Tours

Events spark curiosity in youth about onboard career opportunities through ship walk-throughs led by crew interactive with local communities.

Documentary Screenings

Films educate on maritime significance from economic, engineering and environmental standpoints while honoring those who brave the seas.

Awards and Recognition

Heroic acts are applauded such as rescues at sea, innovations or leadership in sustainability showcased during celebrations.

Cultural Performances

Songs, dances and art representing ties between communities and oceans offer refreshing perspectives on humanity’s deep connection to waterways.


World Maritime Day is an annual reminder of shipping’s foundational role in global society that often goes unnoticed yet remains critical day after day. By fostering appreciation, continuous improvements and interest in upcoming generations, this commemoration safeguards our blue future and livelihoods tied to the seas.