STCW List of Confirmed Parties Expanded

Friday, December 07, 2001
The List of countries assessed to be properly implementing the revised STCW Convention (STCW 95) has been updated by IMO. The First Extraordinary Session of the Organization's Maritime Safety Committee (MSC), meeting on November 27 and 28, received reports from IMO Secretary-General William O'Neil confirming that a further eight Member States had communicated information demonstrating that they were giving "full and complete effect" to the relevant provisions of the Convention. The List of Confirmed Parties now comprises 102 States and one IMO Associate Member.

A position on the list entitles other parties to the STCW Convention to accept, in principle, that certificates issued by or on behalf of the Parties on the List are in compliance with the revised STCW (the International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers) as amended in 1995. The 1995 amendments entered into force on 1 February 1997. The amended Convention sets out clearly defined minimum competency requirements for all seafarers and takes into account developments in technology since the original 1978 Convention was adopted.

The new List of confirmed parties is contained in an MSC Circular (MSC/Circ.1018 - http://www.imo.org/includes/blastDataOnly.asp/data_id=4045/1018.pdf) which notes that, as the process of communicating and evaluating information is continuing, further Parties may be added to the list at annex at its subsequent meetings. For most countries, preparation of the submissions to the Secretary-General represents a demanding and challenging task requiring not only reporting on national laws, training requirements, standards and systems in place, but also ensuring that all of those elements met the revised Convention requirements and could pass the scrutiny of persons with detailed knowledge of those requirements.

A flag State Party that is on the list may, as a matter of policy, elect not to accept seafarers with certificates issued by non-List countries for service on its ships. If it does accept such seafarers, they will be required by 1 February 2002 also to have an endorsement, issued by the flag State, to show that their certificate is recognized by the flag State. By February 1, 2002, masters and officers should hold STCW 95 certificates or endorsements issued by the flag State. Certificates issued and endorsed under the provisions of the 1978 STCW Convention will be valid until their expiry date.

The MSC at its last session agreed to hold an extraordinary session during the IMO's 22nd regular session of its Assembly, specifically to consider reports by the Secretary-General on evaluations of information communicated which may have been completed in the period between MSC 74 and the Assembly. This was considered particularly important in view of the final implementation date of February 1, 2002 for the 1995 amendments to the STCW Convention.

Parties included on the List of Confirmed Parties on November 28, 2001 Algeria Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Australia Azerbaijan Bahamas Bangladesh Barbados Belgium Belize Brazil Bulgaria Canada Chile China Colombia Comoros Cote d'Ivoire Croatia Cuba Cyprus Czech Republic Democratic Peoples' Republic of Korea Denmark* Dominica Ecuador Egypt Estonia Ethiopia Fiji Finland France Georgia Germany Ghana Greece Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Ireland Islamic Republic of Iran Italy Israel Jamaica Japan Kiribati Latvia Liberia Lithuania Luxembourg Madagascar Malaysia Maldives Malta Marshall Islands Mauritius México Micronesia (Federated States of) Morocco Myanmar Netherlands New Zealand Nigeria Norway Pakistan Panama Papua New Guinea Peru Philippines Poland Portugal Republic of Korea Romania Russian Federation Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa Senegal Singapore Slovak Republic Slovenia Solomon Islands South Africa Spain Sri Lanka Sweden Switzerland Thailand Tonga Trinidad & Tobago Tunisia Turkey Tuvalu Ukraine United Kingdom** United States Uruguay Vanuatu Venezuela Viet Nam Yugoslavia China (Hong Kong SAR)*** * Includes: Faeroe Islands ** Includes: Isle of Man Bermuda, Cayman Islands, Gibraltar *** Associate Member

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