On 26 September 2022, Ksenia Drozdova, Director General of Intersputnik, addressed the Assembly with an opening speech. She referred to the importance of the IMSO’s efforts in overseeing the provision of mobile satellite communications services for the Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS).
The International Mobile Satellite Organization is an intergovernmental organisation that oversees the provision of mobile satellite communication services for the Global Maritime Distress and Safety System via the Inmarsat satellites. The organisation assists the work of service providers and supervises their work. IMSO also acts as the Coordinator of the Long-Range Identification and Tracking of Ships (LRIT) system. The ultimate objective of IMSO is to provide seafarers with access to the satellite-based communication technologies for improving safety at sea. The IMSO is now working to ensure that any satellite provider that meets the criteria will be able to provide GMDSS services.
IMSO and Intersputnik have a long collaboration history. On 25 January 2013, these organisations signed a cooperation agreement. It replaced the 1983 cooperation agreement that was executed between Intersputnik and the International Maritime Satellite Organization. With the restructuring of INMARSAT in 1999, IMSO successfully continued to fulfil the tasks assigned to the organisation, meeting the requirements of the time and following the development of satellite communications.
IMSO and Intersputnik share the fundamental objective of providing reliable communication by strengthening trust, mutual understanding and partnership between people in a wide variety of geographic regions. It is symbolic that most of the Intersputnik member countries are at the same time members of IMSO. This creates an additional firm foundation for the development of strong relationships between two organisations. Over the years, both organisations have developed a good tradition of inviting each other to the highest governing body meetings, and of sharing their experiences in space communications, including mobile satellite communications.
Speaking at the opening ceremony of the 28th Session of the highest body of IMSO — Assembly of Parties, Ksenia Drozdova, Director General of Intersputnik, highlighted that IMSO had been successful even in time of unprecedented global challenges like the pandemic. Such dedicated efforts by the entire IMSO team are vital to maritime safety and advance the use of reliable satcom technology in critical areas of life.
The Assembly appointed the new IMSO Director General. H.E. Mr. Laurent Parenté, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of the Republic of Vanuatu to the International Maritime Organization, will take office of the Director General on 15 April 2023. Intersputnik congratulates H.E. Mr. Parenté on his appointment to the high post and expresses its confidence in further development of cooperation between the organisations for the benefit of the member states and the entire global satellite communication industry.
In her statement, Ksenia Drozdova also expressed appreciation to the current Director General of IMSO, Captain Moin Ahmed, who has been Director General of IMSO since 2015 and whose mandate will expire in April 2023. Under Captain Ahmed’s leadership six new member states have joined IMSO and international cooperation with IMSO in various areas, including with partner intergovernmental organisations, has been further strengthened. Ksenia Drozdova thanked Captain Ahmed on behalf of all Intersputnik Members for his continued support and cooperation.
Satellite communications are becoming one of the key technologies of the new era of universal connectivity. New high-tech solutions and innovative strategies, including ultra-high throughput satellites, flexible payloads and multi-orbit systems, are making satellites an integral part of the overall infocommunication ecosystem. Mobile satellite systems are vital for providing modern communication services on the move. They are important not only for providing broadband Internet access, but also and above all for ensuring safety of ships and their crews. Safe navigation and rescue of those suffering distress is a common responsibility of humanity. Intersputnik is also focusing on the development of satellite communications networks for maritime vessels, promoting cooperation with the world’s largest providers of maritime VSAT connectivity services. It is important to note that having both broadband and narrowband channels onboard a ship greatly increases the chances of vessel rescue in the event of an emergency. And crews, in their turn, can enjoy an invaluable opportunity to be close to their loved ones in the farthest reaches of the world.
Intersputnik plans to continue active cooperation with IMSO, making use of its more than 50 years’ experience, expertise in satellite communications projects and its Members’ and Signatories’ ability to provide communications and security services in the seas and oceans.