IMO International Day for Women in Maritime 2024: Women Shaping the Future of Maritime Safety

Christina Tan, Chief Officer

In celebration of the International Day for Women in Maritime 2024, we are delighted to highlight the remarkable journey of Christina Tan, Chief Officer at Pacific International Lines (PIL). This year’s theme, “Safe Horizons: Women Shaping the Future of Maritime Safety,” perfectly encapsulates the invaluable contributions women have made in enhancing maritime safety. Christina’s inspiring story not only reflects her personal achievements but also underscores the importance of inclusivity and mentorship in the maritime industry.

How did you first decide to pursue a seafaring career, and what made you stay and contribute to this field?

In 2011, I decided to pursue a career in seafaring, just like my sister! She has always been my role model, so when I saw how she was thriving in her cadetship back then, I was inspired to follow in her footsteps. I vividly remember the shock on my family members’ faces when I announced my decision. After all, it was quite an established fact that I get motion sickness even on land, let alone at sea!

IMO has themed this year’s International Day for Women in Maritime “Safe Horizons: Women Shaping the Future of Maritime Safety.” As you reflect on this theme, what are your thoughts on how women have contributed to maritime, and what would you say to female youths who are considering a career in the sector?

Women have contributed invaluable perspectives into the maritime industry, which help to enhance safety, and foster innovation. Their intuitive and detailed approach to problem-solving is reshaping how safety is perceived and implemented. To all the young women out there, continue pursuing your goals, and do not let anything – like gender stereotypes, deter you from achieving great heights and exploring the endless opportunities the maritime industry has to offer!

Christina onboard her ship

What key changes would you like to see implemented to enhance safety in the maritime industry?


It’s more important to revisit the basics and focus on complacency, rather than to merely implement new rules. As skilled professionals, we all know how to ensure safety. By taking rules seriously and avoiding shortcuts, we can prevent unnecessary accidents.

Based on your experience, what concrete actions can the industry take to promote inclusivity and progressiveness?


The industry needs more regular engagements with seafarers, especially women seafarers. By listening closely to the issues highlighted by female seafarers and taking their feedback seriously, we can then identify solutions and work towards a more inclusive future. As the world changes, our industry needs to change with it too – this includes stepping up efforts to recognize and support the rights of diverse communities. It’s important that we embrace these changes, so that we can build a truly inclusive and fair workplace.

In what ways have you benefitted from mentorship opportunities? How can we better structure mentorship programs to empower more women?


Mentorship is crucial, especially in our field. I’ve been incredibly lucky to have amazing mentors like my sister who have helped shape my career. I haven’t had the chance to work with a female mentor on board yet, but I’ve already mentored several younger women. Being a woman in this industry has its own set of challenges; if your mentor can truly understand and relate to what you’re going through, it makes all the difference in supporting and empowering you to get ahead in your career!

Moving forward, what initiatives or programs do you think are critical in promoting the recruitment, retention, and sustained employment of women in maritime?


Creating networks or support groups is a fantastic way to foster a sense of belonging for women in the maritime industry. By holding regular meetups, workshops, or seminars, women in this industry can have great spaces to share their experiences, tackle challenges together, and build a supportive community for everyone!


It is also crucial to develop programmes aimed at preparing women for leadership roles within the sector. We can do this through tailored leadership training, giving women more responsibilities in the early stages of their careers, and setting up shadowing programmes. These initiatives equip women with the necessary skills and confidence to step into leadership positions and change the face of our industry!



Christina’s journey in the maritime industry is a testament to the resilience, dedication, and transformative impact that women bring to this field. Her insights and experiences shed light on the essential role of women in shaping a safer and more inclusive maritime future. As we celebrate the International Day for Women in Maritime, let us be inspired by Christina’s story and continue to support and empower women to reach new heights in their maritime careers. Together, we can navigate towards a horizon where diversity and inclusion are the cornerstones of maritime excellence.


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Mr. Lars Kastrup


Mr. Lars Kastrup is the Chief Executive Officer of Pacific International Lines (Pte) Ltd (PIL).

Prior to joining PIL, Mr. Kastrup was CEO of NOL/APL, and subsequently assumed the role of Executive Vice President, Strategy and M&A at CMA CGM Group. A veteran in the global shipping industry with over 30 years of experience, Mr Kastrup’s other roles include Executive Vice President of Assets at CMA CGM Group heading up CMA Terminals, CMA Ships, Container Logistics as well as regional carriers such as MacAndrews, OPDR and Mercosul; as well as Vice President at AP Moller-Maersk.
Mr. Kastrup complemented his tertiary education with leadership and management training at Penn State University and The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.

Ms. Angeline Teo


Ms. Angeline Teo is the Managing Director and Head of Global Transportation and Offshore, Global Corporate Banking at OCBC Bank which focuses on the maritime, aviation, land & port ecosystems.
Ms. Teo has spent over three decades in maritime finance. Prior to OCBC, Ms. Teo was working at ING Bank, ABN Amro and DnB in Singapore focusing on maritime and offshore.
Ms. Teo graduated from the National University of Singapore with a degree in Business Administration.

Mr. John Martin


Mr. John Martin began his career in London in 1989 with Richards Hogg Lindley Average Adjusters, and qualified as a Fellow of the UK Association of Average Adjusters in 2000.
At RHL he worked in their offices in Australia, Taiwan and Hong Kong. In 2003 he joined Gard Hong Kong, as a claims handler. Mr. Martin also worked in Gard Japan, and in 2014 he moved to Singapore to set up the Gard Singapore office.
Besides running Gard Singapore, Mr. Martin also heads the P&I and H&M claims units and is the Senior Claims Representative for Gard in Asia.

Mr. Cyril Ducau


Mr. Cyril Ducau is the Chief Executive Officer of Eastern Pacific Shipping Pte Ltd, a leading shipping company headquartered in Singapore for the past 30 years.

He is also currently the Chairman of Kenon Holdings Ltd and a member of the board of directors of Gard P&I (Bermuda) Ltd. and of the Global Centre for Maritime Decarbonisation Limited, which was established by the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore. He was previously Head of Business Development of Quantum Pacific Advisory Limited in London from 2008 to 2012 and acted as Director and Chairman of Pacific Drilling SA between 2011 and 2018.
Prior to joining Quantum Pacific Advisory Limited, Mr. Ducau was Vice President in the Investment Banking Division of Morgan Stanley & Co. International Ltd. in London between 2000 and 2008.
Mr. Ducau graduated from ESCP Europe Business School (Paris, Oxford, Berlin) and holds a Master of Science in business administration and a Diplom Kaufmann.