New Zealand Debates Changes to Maritime Transport Act
A new Bill currently before Parliament transfers some responsibilities from Maritime New Zealand to the Environmental Protection Authority.
The Marine Legislation Bill had its first reading in Parliament on 11 September 2012.
The Bill makes a number of changes to the Maritime Transport Act 1994 including provisions to:
• promote navigation safety in ports and harbours in support of the New Zealand Port and Harbour Marine Safety Code
• implement three international maritime conventions – primarily around marine pollution
• implement maximum blood alcohol limits for seafarers introduced by the recent amendments to the STCW Convention
• Address gaps in offence provisions and making the Act easier to interpret and apply
• Amend rule-making powers and processes.
The Bill also transfers responsibility for regulating certain discharges and the dumping of waste from vessels from Maritime New Zealand to the Environmental Protection Authority.