About IAPH

IAPH is a non-governmental organization (NGO) headquartered in Tokyo, Japan. In November 1955, some 100 world port leaders gathered in Los Angeles to announce the creation of IAPH. Over the past six decades, IAPH has developed into a global alliance of ports, representing today some 177 ports and 147 port-related businesses in 84 countries as of 31 August 2023. The member ports together handle well over 60% of the world’s sea-borne trade and over 60% of the world container traffic. To make IAPH more relevant for its members and more widely promoted in the world port and maritime community, IAPH adopted a new Constitution in 2016. It was the first time in its history spanning over 60 years that the constitution was rewritten entirely to meet the demands of the day. It was no doubt an epoch-making event in its history.


IAPH aims to be the global trade association of choice for port authorities and operators, representing their interests at regulatory level at the International Maritime Organization, the World Customs Organization, the International Standards Organization and other global alliances such as the Global Maritime Forum and the World Economic Forum.


IAPH has consultative status and works on behalf of ports with additional United Nations bodies such as the UNCTAD (UN Conference on Trade and Development), UNEP (UN Environment Program) and the UN Global Compact.


As trade association of choice, IAPH aims to be the industry reference for sharing best practices of the most advanced and sophisticated ports on the planet, including:


  • Pioneering innovations in energy transition, decarbonization and emissions reductions at ports and in all ship-to-shore interfaces


  • Leading the industry forward in collaborating with other industry partners such as ICS, BIMCO and private sector to improve data orchestration between ports and their stakeholders, improving efficiency, creating synergies and reducing emissions by eliminating berth waiting time.


  • Confronting the challenges of the global COVID-19 pandemic now and in the years ahead, with a future roadmap for port resilience against the crises to come


Following two financial and one health crisis of global proportions this century, IAPH will improve global ports’ agility in handling the next crisis, offering expertise and experience in formulating business continuity strategies relevant for all ports, irrespective of size and business model. 


The three main pillars of activity are listed in the top panel, and are listed as follows: