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1- International Maritime Organizations (IMO)
Several IMO conventions contain regulations that permit Governments to inspect foreign ships that visit their ports to ensure that they meet international (mainly IMO) requirements. This involves creating an administration ,a team of surveyors and  inspectors , consequently can be expensive. But, by combining with other countries to form regional Port State Control agreements these costs can be reduced and the effectiveness of the inspection programme increased. At the same time, the data collected can help to target flags, companies and individual ships that have a poor safety record. The first regional agreement was created in Western Europe in 1982 by means of the Paris Memorandum of Understanding on Port State Control.
Since then other regional agreements have been setup in Latin America, Asia and the Pacific, the wider Caribbean, the Mediterranean and, most recently west and Central Africa agreement.
The present momentum on the establishment of Port State Control regimes in the various regions of the world stems from IMO initiatives at the beginning of this decade when, with a view to eradicating substandard ships the Assembly of the International Maritime Origination adopted resolution A.682 (17) “Regional Cooperation in the Control of Ships and Discharges “, as proposed by the Secretary General of IMO to promote the establishment of such regimes in the various regions of the world following the pattern adopted by  the European region through the Paris Memorandum of Understanding on Port State Control (MOU) in 1982. Having established the above referred to regional PSC capabilities, which of course are operating with various degrees of success, the next major initiative now is the establishing of Port State Control in the Indian Ocean region and at the moment IMO is also in consultations with the maritime Authorities of countries within the remaining regions not yet subject to specific Port state Control agreements. It is envisaged that during the period 1999- 2000 Preparatory Meeting aimed at the establishment of such agreements will take place when the above is completed full global coverage through independent, although cooperating, regional agreements in various regions of the world will be achieved.
IMO Conventions
The international maritime conventions mentioned in the previous section, referred to as the relevant instruments, are as follows:
  • International Convention on Load Lines 1966, as amended, and its 1988 Protocol(LOADLINES 66/88);
  • International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS), 1974, its Protocol of 1978, as amended, and the Protocol of 1988, (SOLAS 74/78/88);
  • International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships, 1973, as modified by the Protocol of 1978, as amended (MARPOL 73/78);
  • International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watch keeping for Seafarers 1978, as amended (STCW 78);
  • Convention on the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea 1972, as amended (COLREG 72);
  • International Convention on Tonnage Measurement of Ships 1969 (TONNAGE 1969);
International Maritime Organization
Maritime Safety Division
4 Albert Embankment
London SE1 7SR, United Kingdom
Telephone:44-207-7357611
Telefax:44-207-5873210
Telex: 065+23588 IMOLDN G
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2- International Labour Office (ILO)
Inspections on board ships under the Merchant Shipping (Minimum Standards) Convention, 1976 (ILO Convention No. 147) relate to:
  • Minimum Age Convention, 1973 (No. 138);
  • Minimum Age (Sea) Convention (Revised),1936 (No. 58);
  • Minimum Age (Sea) Convention, 1920 (No. 7);
  • Medical Examination (Seafarers) Convention, 1946 (No. 73);
  • Prevention of Accidents (Seafarers) Convention, 1970 (No. 134) (Articles 4 and 7);
  • Accommodation of Crews Convention (Revised), 1949 (No. 92);
  • Food and Catering (Ships’ Crews) Convention, 1946 (No. 68) (Article 5);
  • Officers’ Competency Certificates Convention, 1936 (No. 53) (Articles 3 and 4).
All complaints regarding conditions on board will be investigated thoroughly and action will be taken as deemed necessary by the PSCO. If necessary, the ship will be detained until appropriate corrective action is taken.
International Labour Office 
Maritime Industries Branch 4 Route des Morillons
CH-1211 Geneva 22, Switzerland
Telephone:41-22-7997466 
Fax : 41-22-7997050
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3- The European Commission (EC)
Directorate-General for Transport
Commission of the European Communities
Unit D3
Rue de la Loi 200,B.1049 Bruxelles, Belgium
Telephone: 32-2-2968265
Fax: 32-2-2969066
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