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The European Community Shipowners' Associations (ECSA) and the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) have urged the European Union (EU) and the Chinese leadership to intensify cooperation in achieving a global climate deal for the shipping sector.

The call was made after the US announced its decision to withdraw from the Paris Climate Agreement.

According to ECSA and ICS, indications of such cooperation materialised during the 19th EU-China Summit held in Brussels, Belgium last week, when the EU and Chinese leaders reaffirmed their commitment to implement the Paris climate deal.

EU and Chinese leaders, along with Canada, are also looking forward to co-hosting a ministerial gathering in September to advance the implementation of the Paris Agreement and speed-up the clean energy transition.

"The withdrawal of the US from the Paris Climate Agreement should not jeopardise an ambitious global strategy to reduce the CO² emissions of shipping."

ECSA secretary general Patrick Verhoeven said: “The withdrawal of the US from the Paris Climate Agreement should not jeopardise an ambitious global strategy to reduce the CO² emissions of shipping.

“We are therefore pleased that the EU and China appear to be working towards reinforced co-operation on delivering a climate agreement for shipping at the International Maritime Organisation (IMO).”

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By GlobalData

IMO is set to begin a discussion on its global greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction strategy in a few weeks’ time.

The organisation is also seeking to establish an initial emission reduction strategy next year, with a plan to finalise the same in 2023 after collecting and analysing real-time data on CO² emissions from the global shipping industry.

Furthermore, the global shipping industry, represented by four international shipowner organisations, has already submitted a proposal to IMO to keep total global CO²  emissions below 2008 levels, and then gradually cutting annual total emissions from the sector by 2050, by a percentage to be agreed by IMO.