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Shipping industry updates flag state performance table

Date: 15/12/2010

The Round Table of international associations (BIMCO, International Chamber of Shipping/International Shipping Federation, INTERCARGO and INTERTANKO) have published their latest “Shipping Industry Flag State Performance Table”, which is updated on an annual basis.
The updated table can be downloaded or viewed here: Flag State Performance Table 2010

The Table, which accompanies the well established “Shipping Industry Guidelines on Flag State Performance”, summarises factual information, derived from the public domain. The intention is to provide a general appreciation of a flag’s performance and to encourage ship operators to reflect on a flag’s quality before using it.

As the table demonstrates, the vast majority of the world fleet is registered with flag states which take their responsibilities very seriously. Most flags have ratified most of the key International Maritime Organization (IMO) Conventions, the adequate enforcement of which is shown by their Port State Control records. There is always room for improvement and most flags continue to receive a small number of potential negative performance indicators (black blobs). However, many flags have improved on their performance in previous years, some dramatically, and notably six flags had no potential negative performance indicators at all in 2010. Since the Table was first compiled in 2003, there has been a noticeable decline in the number of flag states that appear on the black lists of regional Port State Control authorities.

Unfortunately, there are still a number of poorly performing ship registers, and for 2010 the list of the very worst performing flags, which the Round Table believes shipowners should think very carefully about before using, includes: Albania, Bolivia, Cambodia, Columbia, Costa Rica, Cote d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of Congo, Georgia, Honduras, Lebanon, St Kitts and Nevis, Sao Tome and Principe, and Sierra Leone.

The Table (and accompanying Guidelines) are intended to serve as a complement to the Voluntary IMO Member State Audit Scheme, by which maritime administrations are subject to external audit under the auspices of IMO with regard to their implementation of IMO Conventions relevant to the safety of life at sea and protection of the marine environment. The shipping industry associations welcomed the decision taken by the IMO Council to make this scheme mandatory in due course.

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