The Women's International Shipping & Trading Association (WISTA) continues its expansion in South America, welcoming WISTA Venezuela. WISTA Venezuela joins WISTA Argentina, WISTA Brazil, WISTA Peru, and WISTA Uruguay in representing female executives in shipping based in South America.
"WISTA International is proud to add WISTA Venezuela to our global network," said Despina Panayiotou Theodosiou, president of WISTA International. "WISTA Venezuela brings additional opportunities to women in shipping throughout the world, as well as expands opportunities for business and professional development for Venezuelan women in shipping."
"Being a member of WISTA International, empowers Venezuelan women and promotes the maritime transport sector and international trade," said Debora Valeria, president of WISTA Venezuela. "WISTA International offers WISTA Venezuela members a wide network of global contacts to generate new business opportunities, participate in initiatives with organizations such as International Maritime Organization (IMO), Institute of Chartered Ship Brokers (ICS), Baltic and International Maritime Council (BIMCO), and the Organization of American States' Inter-American Committee on Ports, and increase recognition of our capabilities, which strengthens the maritime industry in Venezuela."
WISTA Venezuela is led by the President of WISTA Venezuela Débora Valera, President of VSV Marine & Port Group and President of the Venezuelan Maritime Cluster; Vice President María Grazia Blanco, Vice President of the Venezuelan Branch of the Ibero-American Institute of Maritime Law; General Secretary Ines Tovar Rodríguez, General Director of Ports of the Ministry of Popular Power for Transport; Treasurer Marlys Alexandra Lemus, Executive Director of APAVEN and Vice President of Social Development of the Venezuelan Maritime Cluster; and Executive Director María Rodrigues, President of the Venezuelan and Caribbean Association of Maritime and Port Medicine and Vice President of Maritime Medicine of the Venezuelan Maritime Cluster.
Additional founding members of WISTA Venezuela include: Adriana Ulloa, Deputy Vice President of the Venezuelan Branch of the Ibero-American Institute of Maritime Law; Luzday Andrea Borrero, Globals Maritime Engineer; Elsy del Valle Rodríguez, Vice President of Maritime and Port Woman of the Venezuelan Maritime Cluster; Luisa Elena Álvarez Pérez, Partner at Carrillo & Asociados; Ana María Rodríguez, General Operations of Cygnus Marine Services, C. A. CYGMAR SERVICES; and Carla Hurtado, Director of the VENAVEGA Office. And a first active member Ana Mary Ramírez recognized International Maritime Lawyer.
Three National WISTA Associations have established in South America this year: WISTA Venezuela, WISTA Peru, and WISTA Uruguay. An additional National WISTA Association is expected to form in the region this year. In addition to domestic events for networking and business development, National WISTA Associations often participate in regional and international WISTA Conferences. A WISTA Americas conference was held earlier this year in Buenos Aires, Argentina. The next global WISTA International Annual General Meeting & Conference will be held in Tromsø, Norway this October.
WISTA International is an international networking organization for female executives in the shipping industry. WISTA International is comprised of 44 National WISTA Associations (NWA) around the world and nearly 3,000 members. National WISTA Associations are formed in individual countries. To launch a National WISTA Association, the association must file appropriate paperwork in the home country, have at least ten members in management positions and pay annual fees to WISTA International. In addition to the new National WISTA Associations in South America, WISTA International has welcomed WISTA Japan and WISTA Panama in 2018.
"Participation and integration of women in the maritime sector is a topic of great discussion in international organizations, and of equal importance in the national agencies in Venezuela. We must assume the responsibility of ensuring programs and activities planned by maritime organizations include not only representatives of the maritime authorities, but also women from the private sector in the maritime industry, with the goal of eliminating all forms of discrimination against women. We believe that IMO is setting the example with the approval of WISTA International as a consultative member. WISTA Venezuela looks forward to supporting WISTA International in IMO committees and activities," said Valera.