Maritime Security Notices,Shipping Circulars
No. 3 of 2004

16 Jan 2004

Applicable to: Shipowners, shipmanagers, masters and officers of Singapore ships.
This circular highlights the need for the early compliance of the amendments to SOLAS 74 adopted by the IMO Diplomatic Conference on Maritime Security held in London in December 2002.
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 will come into force on 1 July 2004.

2.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.

3.Marine Circular No 8 of 2003 dated 23 May 2003 highlights the need for the early implementation of the maritime security measures adopted by the IMO. Marine Circular 20 of 2003 dated 26 Sep 2003 provides the list of the Recognised Security Organizations (RSO) authorised by the MPA for the approval of the ship security plans and the associated verification and certification of compliance. The Circulars are available at"http://www.mpa.gov.sg".

4.You are strongly urged to ensure that all Singapore-registered ships under your charge, covered by the ISPS Code, complete the maritime security verification and certification process by 1 April 2004. Early compliance will also ensure that you enjoy a number of advantages and opportunities which include:

               (a) Avoiding disruption to your trading schedule caused by a backlog of work as world-wide demand for the
                   services of the RSO auditors picks up closer towards the deadline.

               (b) Capitalizing on your readiness because shippers and charterers would invariably prefer to use ships that
                   have complied with the ISPS Code.

               (c) Being assured that your ship's Continuous Synopsis Record (CSR) is issued on time. The CSR is issued
                   on application on first-come-first-served basis based upon attaining the International Ship Security Certificate
                   (ISSC). As the deadline approaches, you could expect delays caused by the high numbers to be issued.

               (d) Greater opportunities for the ship's crew to be acquainted with the Ship Security Plan and as a result, less
                    Chance of control and compliance measures imposed on the ship. Port State control regimes are expected
                    to increase their inspections on the maritime security measures in the coming months. Lack of knowledge
                    with the essential shipboard security procedures or failure to conduct a proper drill may lead to control and
                    compliance measures imposed on the ship.

5.The following is provided as a guide on the deadlines you should aim for in regard to achieving compliance by 1 Apr 04:

             (a) Submission of ship security plan to RSO for approval: by 1 Feb 04
             (b) Ship security plan approved: by mid Feb 04
             (c) Implementation of maritime security measures on board: by early Mar 04
             (d) Verification / audit by RSO: by mid Mar 04.

6.Any queries relating to this circular should be directed to Mr Mark Lim at 63756204.


The first list of RSOs is provided in Marine Circular 17 of 2003 dated 25 Aug 2003.
Period on implementation depends on the ship. Implementation could be carried out by SSO while the ship security plan is under review by RSO for approval.