Maritime Security Notices,Shipping Circulars
No. 8 of 2003

23 May 2003

Applicable to: Shipowners, shipmanagers, masters and officers of Singapore ships. This circular highlights the need for the early implementation of the amendments to SOLAS 74 adopted by the IMO Diplomatic Conference on Maritime Security held in London in December 2002.

  1. The IMO Diplomatic Conference on Maritime Security held in London in December 2002 adopted several amendments to SOLAS 74. These amendments include the introduction of Maritime Security into SOLAS 74 and incorporate the International Ship and Port Facility Security (ISPS) Code. The amendments are expected to come into force on 1 July 2004.

  2. Marine Circular No 3 of 2003 dated 12 March 2003 highlights the essential elements of the amendments. The Circular is available at "http://www.mpa.gov.sg". Your attention is also drawn to the attached MSC/Circ.1067wherein the industry is to note that no provision of extension is given on the implementation dates for the introduction of the special measures to enhance maritime security introduced into SOLAS.

  3. The maritime security measures adopted by the IMO are necessary to safeguard world maritime trade from the threats of terrorist attacks. Maritime security must become as much an integral part of the shipping community as safety has been. The shipping community and port facilities are advised to take note that maritime security involves a whole range of activities, many of which are new to the industry. The processes and documentation required under the ISPS Code have to be in place by 1 Jul 2004.

  4. In implementing the maritime security measures and requirements, you are also reminded of your responsibilities in regard to the ensuring that:

    (a) the ship's crew and shore personnel who are in positions responsible for implementing maritime security have a good knowledge of the requirements of the ISPS Code;

    (b) there is a framework established within the company and ship to facilitate the efficient and effective implementation of the measures on board and at the port facilities as part of the ship's operation; and

    (c) full management support is provided at all levels with the organization structure and system given their due priority in emphasizing maritime security.

  5. From 1 Jul 2004, ships found not in compliance with the maritime security requirements will be subject to control and compliance measures. These measures include delaying the ship, detention of the ship and expulsion of the ship from ports. You therefore risk disruption to your operations. You are advised to ensure that all maritime security measures are in place by the deadline. However, you are encouraged to take steps early to increase your crew awareness of dangers relating to terrorism at sea and of the importance of keeping vigilant and alert to any security threat that they and the ship may encounter.

  6. Any queries relating to this circular should be directed to Mr Mark Lim at 63252410.