BIMCO’s President Knud Pontoppidan and U.S. Coast Guard Rear Admiral Craig Bone signed a new partnership agreement at U.S. Coast Guard Headquarters in September 7. The agreement is aimed at enhancing the communication and working relationship between the Coast Guard and the shipping industry.
The establishment of the partnership coincides with the development of BIMCO’s guide for seafarers on US Port State Control inspections. Developed in cooperation with the Coast Guard, the guide is aimed at raising awareness amongst seafarers regarding measures implemented on board ships to ensure compliance with MARPOL and SOLAS requirements.
The agreement signed represents an expansion of a previous agreement signed in 1998. Subsequent developments since then, including the initiatives and regulations relating to maritime security and BIMCO’s renewed focus on the fair treatment of seafarers warranted the establishment of a more encompassing agreement that covers these matters.
BIMCO’s continuing work with the USCG in respect of the global implementation of the SOLAS ISPS Code at port facilities and more recent work relating to concerns surrounding the operation of oily water separators illustrated the need to establish a broadened partnership agreement.
It is hoped that the new agreement will strengthen the dialogue between BIMCO and the US Coast Guard as long term strategies are developed to address the future challenges relating to safe and secure maritime trades.