About COS

Chamber of Shipping > About COS

Our History

The Chamber of Shipping has been the public voice of the marine industry on Canada’s West Coast since 1923. Trade between North America and Asia relies on Canada’s Asia-Pacific Gateway, and benefits the entire nation. The Chamber highlights the importance and impact of shipping, and works to ensure that policies are being followed to optimize safe and efficient transport. 

The Chamber is committed to building and maintaining constructive relationships with legislators at all levels. Meetings between members and other influential marine partners and stakeholders are solution-driven, aimed at achieving the best outcome for all involved. The Chamber provides input at the highest levels of marine policy-making, thanks to close working relationships with a number of Canadian, U.S., and international marine and business associations.  

The Chamber’s Board of Directors is composed of eleven members who provide governance, policy direction, and industry oversight to the activities of the association. Board members also chair standing committees which deal with day-to-day local issues. The secretariat reports wider national and international issues which have, or the potential to have, a bearing on the marine industry, either commercially or operationally.

I have been fortunate to work in many amazing organizations and collaborate with a significant number of diverse stakeholders. I am passionate about building value in the shipping industry in Canada and North America while encouraging sustainable business practices that will ensure the viability of our industry and the protection of our national ecosystem.

Robert-Lewis Manning President

About Chamber of Shipping

Since 1923, the Chamber of Shipping has been the representative voice of the marine industry on Canada’s West Coast. Today more than ever before, that voice needs to be heard. North America’s trade with Asia is undergoing continual growth and Canada’s Asia-Pacific Gateway is the key to the trade efficiency that the entire nation benefits from.

The Chamber of Shipping Constitution dates back many decades, and continues to include the following purposes: 

  • To assist persons, firms and corporations involved in shipping as agents, owners, and operators in complying with applicable legislative and regulatory requirements. These  include without limiting acting as a liaison and representative of such agents, owners and operators in securing services and by obtaining or disseminating information to agents, owners and operators on applicable legislative and regulatory requirements, as well as providing personnel and administrative assistance to such persons on a cost recovery basis.
  • To promote the development of business capable of providing services, facilities and equipment required by or which will benefit the interests of persons, firms and corporations.
  • To negotiate on behalf of its members with other persons, groups, agencies, organizations or authorities that are domestic or foreign, to secure and ensure the availability of facilities and services for vessels within the waters of the Province of British Columbia on terms that are economic and advantageous to the interests it represents. 
  • To further cooperation among persons, firms, and corporations in the Province of British Columbia promote the interests of those who are engaged in shipping businesses as owners, agents, or operators.
  • To undertake the study of problems relating to the shipping industry and to exchange information among members and others.
  • To assist Federal, Provincial and Municipal Governments and Departments with the development of harbours and shipping facilities.
  • To propose legislation and regulations which may affect shipping and related industries to Federal, Provincial, and Municipal Governments.
  • To advise Governmental bodies or their Departments on matters affecting the customs of the ports, documentation, commercial charges, practices, and any other matter affecting the interests of shipping.
  • To promote the highest standards of business ethics among persons, firms, and corporations engaged in the shipping industry.
  • To do all things necessary of incidental to the attainment of the objects of The Chamber.
  • To do all things as are necessarily incidental to or that are reasonably ancillary to any of the foregoing or of the same general nature.

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