July 1: The Time is Now

Friday, June 25, 2004
As maritime regulators in various countries prepare to implement the ISPS Code rigorously, with effect from next Thursday, analysts are watching shipping security developments closely. Recent reports from the International Chamber of Commerce, which publishes a weekly newsletter on global maritime piracy, indicate a spate of attacks over the last three weeks in Senegal, Cameroon, the Malacca Straits and Indonesia. Such attacks are nothing new: nor is the loss of life amongst ill-fated seafarers, caught in the wrong place at the wrong time.

July 1st also heralds the first deadline for the installation of Ship Security Alert Systems on board more than 40,000 of the world’s ocean-going cargo and passenger ships. Under amendments to the SOLAS Convention, crude oil, chemical and gas tankers as well as bulk carriers will be required to install such systems by the time they undergo the first radio survey after the beginning of July. Other cargo ships such as container vessels, general cargo ships and ro/ros will be required to put such systems on board by the first radio survey after July 2006.

The international maritime security net is tightening all the time. The US Coast Guard is planning to track electronically all cargo vessels approaching the country’s ports for four days prior to their arrival and is preparing to extend IMO’s ship security regulations to classes of domestic vessels such as Great Lakes traders, passenger ships and smaller vessels of less than 500 gross tons, not included for the moment in the IMO’s regulations. Meanwhile, in the UK, the Maritime and Coastguard Agency is likely to impose new security regulations on passenger ships and domestically trading tonnage once the first July 1st deadline has been and gone.

The new maritime security backdrop, however, demonstrates many contrasts. On the one hand, the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore and some European countries are planning to enforce the new regulations from day one. But other countries appear remarkably laid back, presumably believing that world trade will go on, come what may. However, considering that their port facilities and ship repair yards could be blacklisted if security arrangements there are deemed inadequate, this appears to be a remarkably cavalier attitude. Ships calling at such facilities risk being delayed, detained or even refused entry in other countries’ marine terminals. The stakes are very high indeed.

The fact that maritime nations have different standards when it comes to enforcing regulations is a major concern for ship owners. This week, the European Court of Justice decided that France had failed in its duty to inspect a minimum of 25% of foreign ships entering its ports between 1999 and 2001 although French Government officials have since claimed that 30% of ships were inspected in 2003 and at least 25% are likely to be inspected in 2004.

However, this lack of compliance in a leading north European maritime nation does beg questions over enforcement of the ISPS Code. Have the ports and repair yards in France, often located in the middle of the country’s bustling cities, really responded to the spirit of the ISPS Code? Have they been made secure in the way that the ISPS Code envisages, prior to the July 1st ISPS deadline? Have certificates been issued only upon confirmation that proper procedures have been established? And, if US authorities decide to pick on a couple of facilities at random, what then?

The IMO finally admitted this week that the Code’s deadline will not be met by about a third of all vessels and more than 80% of world port facilities. Figures for ship repair yards are not yet available … but you have been warned!

Maritime Reporter August 2014 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

Finance

Exxon: U.S. to Allow Wind Down Ops in Russian Arctic

U.S. oil major Exxon Mobil said on Friday the U.S. Treasury Department granted it a license to wind down operations on a drilling well in the Kara Sea in the Russian Arctic.

Sulzer Shareholder has 5 pct Dresser-Rand Stake

Russian billionaire Viktor Vekselberg's Swiss investment firm Renova Group said on Friday it had a 4.99 percent stake in U.S.-based Dresser-Rand, which might become the object of a takeover battle.

Source: Siemens Offering $6.1 bln for Dresser Rand

Germany's Siemens plans to offer more than $6.1 billion, or $80 per share, for U.S. compressor and turbine maker Dresser-Rand, Germany's Manager Magazin said on Friday.

Maritime Security

Seagull Maritime Response on Safety, Security

Key areas of concern for seafarer safety and security in both marine and offshore operations have triggered the release of six new and one supplementary titles

Russia: Exxon Still Drilling in its Arctic

ExxonMobil is still drilling in the Russian Arctic, a Russian minister said on Friday, in move that if confirmed will anger Washington after the U.S. administration

USCG Cutter in Oregon Spill Drill

The crew of Coast Guard Cutter Fir, a 225-foot buoy tender homeported in Astoria, Oregon, participated in a Spilled Oil Response System exercise near Blake Island, Washington, Wednesday.

 
 
Maritime Security Maritime Standards Navigation Offshore Oil Salvage Ship Electronics Ship Repair Ship Simulators Sonar Winch
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | terms and conditions | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.2952 sec (3 req/sec)