Strengthening maritime navigation: IFAN Meeting in Doha

In a significant stride towards enhancing maritime navigation, the International Foundation for Aids to Navigation (IFAN) recently attended a top-level meeting in Doha, Qatar.

The meeting, hosted at the Ministry of Transport offices on 13th and 14th November, brought together key IFAN attendees, along with government representatives, and experts from the United Kingdom Hydrographers Office (UKHO) to discuss vital matters related to Aids to Navigation (AtoN) in Qatari and Gulf waters.

IFAN attendees included Guy Mason, Chairman; Peter Stanley, Independent Director; Yousef Alsager, Member Nominated Director from Kuwait Oil Tanker Company (KOTC); Mahdi Al Mosawi, General Manager of the Middle East Navigation Aids Service (MENAS); and Mohammed Kurshid, Operations Manager at MENAS.

Following on from discussions in London, they met with Assistant Undersecretary of Maritime Transport Affairs, Dr Saleh bin Fetais Al-Marri, staff from the Ministry of Transport, Qatar and Tim Lewis and Anna Bladon, from the UKHO. The primary purpose of the meeting was to build upon the momentum generated by recent discussions in London with the delegates deliberating Aids to Navigation in Qatari and Gulf waters, focusing on the services provided by both the UKHO and MENAS.

MENAS was keen to answer any questions on its bid to support Qatar in its ongoing review of AtoN in Qatari waters. The proposal includes a commitment to providing essential training in AtoN management, showcasing MENAS’s dedication to fostering maritime safety and navigation in the region.

The Doha meeting was extremely positive and was marked by a cordial agreement among the stakeholders to continue discussions and collaborations.

Peter Stanley, Director, IFAN said: “The shared commitment to enhancing Aids to Navigation in the region was evident throughout the deliberations.

“We would like to thank Qatar for hosting the meeting and providing excellent hospitality. The warm reception extended to the delegates underscored the collaborative spirit and we look forward to further advancements in AtoN, benefiting not only the participating nations but the broader maritime community.”