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Saturday, June 2, 2012

International organisations-the lifeblood of shipping

Services performed by the principal shipping organizations

Shipping is a global business and as such how can it remain aloof from the impacts of the national and international shipping organizations which fosters the international trade at full fledged speed through their specific regulations and regimes. Shipping being a cyclical business has always faced upwards and downward trends in the economic milieu and in order to maintain the stability of the shipping business dynamics these international organizations roles have proved to be significant and immensely contributory for the shipping industry.

There is no dearth of fact that the international organizations like IMO, UNCTAD, OPEC, WTO, OECD,ILO,ICS, INTERTANKO, OCIMF, MARPOL SOLAS, STCW,INTERCARGO and many more have certainly possessed themselves to be the lifeline of the shipping business which ultimately in return fosters the economic growth of the country in the short as well as long run. The stringent rules and regulations set up by these international organizations serve to be the guiding factors and sets the shipping companies and organizations to follow upon the strict disciplinarian path in order to increase its productivity and efficiency through its adaptability to these regulations and regimes. These international shipping organizations are the crucial components for the overall development of the shipping business in the long run. Being as international organizations they streamline the flow of international trade (imports and exports) and leads to the enhancement of the whole shipping business dynami cs. These organizations are the catalytic game changers which have much larger purpose to fulfill in the arena of shipping business.

Let's have a brief analysis and outlook of these principal national and international organizations which has influenced the arena of business called shipping.

International Maritime 0rganization (IMO)

SLOGAN: "Safe, secure and efficient shipping on clean oceans."

Established : 17th march 1948

Headquarters : London,UK

Member countries: 170

No. of staff: 300

Budget for 2010-11: 61,151,200.

Scheduled meetings after every two years.

Secretary General : Mr. Efthimios E. Mitropoulos (Greece).

The International Maritime Organization is a specialized agency of the United Nations which is responsible for measures to improve the safety and security of international shipping and to prevent marine pollution from ships. It is also involved in legal matters, including liability and compensation issues and the facilitation of international maritime traffic. It was established by means of a Convention adopted under the auspices of the United Nations in Geneva on 17 March 1948 and met for the first time in January 1959. It currently has 170 Member States. IMO's governing body is the Assembly which is made up of all 170 Member States and meets normally once every two years.,. The Council acts as governing body in between Assembly sessions. It prepares the budget and work programme for the Assembly. The main technical work is carried out by the Maritime Safety, Marine Environment Protection, Legal Technical Co-operation and Facilitation Committees and a num ber of sub-committees. It adopts the budget for the next biennium together with technical resolutions and recommendations prepared by subsidiary bodies during the previous two years

The IMO slogan sums up its objectives:Safe, secure and efficient shipping on clean oceans.

The current Secretary-General is Mr. Efthimios E. Mitropoulos (Greece).

What does IMO do?

When IMO first began operations its chief concern was to develop international treaties and other legislation concerning safety and marine pollution prevention.
By the late 1970s, however, this work had been largely completed, though a number of important instruments were adopted in more recent years. IMO is now concentrating on keeping legislation up to date and ensuring that it is ratified by as many countries as possible. This has been so successful that many Conventions now apply to more than 98% of world merchant shipping tonnage.Currently the emphasis is on trying to ensure that these conventions and other treaties are properly implemented by the countries that have accepted them.

How does IMO implement legislation?

It doesn't. IMO was established toadoptlegislation. Governments are responsible forimplementingit. When a Government accepts an IMO Convention it agrees to make it part of its own national law and to enforce it just like any other law. The problem is that some countries lack the expertise, experience and resources necessary to do this properly. Others perhaps put enforcement fairly low down their list of priorities.

The result is that serious casualty rates - probably the best way of seeing how effective Governments are at implementing legislation - can potentially vary from flag to flag.

IMO is concerned about this problem and in 1992 set up a special Sub-Committee on Flag State Implementation to improve the performance of Governments. Another way of raising standards is through port State control. The most important IMO conventions contain provisions for Governments to inspect foreign ships that visit their ports to ensure that they meet IMO standards. If they do not they can be detained until repairs are carried out. Experience has shown that this works best if countries join together to form regional port State control organizations.

IMO has encouraged this process and agreements have been signed covering Europe and the north Atlantic (Paris MOU); Asia and the Pacific (Tokyo MOU); Latin America (Acuerdo de Via del Mar); Caribbean (Caribbean MOU); West and Central Africa (Abuja MOU); the Black Sea region (Black Sea MOU); the Mediterranean (Mediterranean MOU); the Indian Ocean (Indian Ocean MOU) and the Arab States of the Gulf (GCC MoU (Riyadh MoU)).

IMO also has an extensive technical co-operation programme which concentrates on improving the ability of developing countries to help themselves. It concentrates on developing human resources through maritime training and similar activities.

IMO has adopted the Voluntary IMO Member State Audit Scheme. The Audit Scheme is designed to help promote maritime safety and environmental protection by assessing how effectively Member States implement and enforce relevant IMO Convention standards, and by providing them with feedback and advice on their current performance. The first audits under the Voluntary IMO Member State Audit Scheme were completed at the end of 2006 but the IMO Assembly has agreed a programme to make this scheme mandatory, with the entry into force of the mandatory audit scheme likely to be in 2015.

What about the classification societies?

All ships must be surveyed in ordered to be issued certificates which establish their seaworthiness, type of ship, and so on and this is the responsibility of the flag State of the vessel. However, the flag State ("Administration") may "entrust the inspections and surveys either to surveyors nominated for the purpose or to organizations recognized by it" (SOLAS Chapter 1, regulation 6).
In practice these "recognized organizations" are often the classification societies.

The International Association of Classification Societies(IACS) is a Non-Governmental Organization which was granted Consultative Status with IMO in 1969.

IMO has adopted a whole series of conventions covering prevention of marine pollution by ships, preparedness and response to incidents involving oil and hazardous and noxious substances, prevention of use of harmful anti-fouling systems and the international convention on ballast water management to prevent the spread of harmful aquatic organisms in ballast water.

The Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) deals with all issues relating to marine environment protection as it relates to shipping.IMO is heavily engaged in the fight to protect and preserve our environment - both marine and atmospheric - and is energetically pursuing the limitation and reduction of greenhouse gas emissions from shipping operations. The Marine Environment Protection Committee has developed energy efficiency measures, both for existing and new ships, to enable a comprehensive package of technical and operational measures to be agreed.

Protecting the environment from shipping is not just about specific regulations preventing ships dumping oil, garbage or sewage. It is also about the improvements in safety - from mandatory traffic separation schemes to the International Safety Management (ISM) Code and improving seafarer training - which help to prevent accidents occurring.

The preservation of Special Areas and Particularly Sensitive Sea Areas is an important aspect of IMO's work. IMO adopts these areas - so that all Member States have an opportunity to view proposals and discuss any proposed measures, so that any which might impact on the freedom of navigation can be fully explored.

IMO's Technical Co-operation Programme is hugely important in ensuring Member States have the resources and expertise to implement IMO conventions relating to marine pollution prevention. Examples of programmes include: sensitivity mapping to identify which parts of a coastline are particularly vulnera ble; training in oil spill response and contingency planning; the GloBallast project which is addressing ballast water management issues; and the Marine Electronic Highway in the Malacca Strait.

The IMO has a significant role to play in preserving the marine environment and ensuring that shipping does not have a negative impact. It is recognized that environmentally speaking in terms of energy needed for volume of cargo transported, shipping is one of the "greenest" transport methods.

IMO is a bargain. It is one of the smallest agencies in the United Nations system, both in terms of staff numbers (just 300 permanent staff) and budget. The total budget for the 2010-2011 biennium is 61,151,200.

The IMO budget is unique for another reason. Costs are shared between the 170 Member States primarily in proportion to the size of each one's fleet of merchant ships. The biggest fleets in the world are currently operated by Panama and Liberia and so they pay the biggest share of IMO's budget.

Why is IMO so slow?

The main purpose of IMO is to adopt international treaties which are intended to apply to as many ships as possible. Unanimity of this kind inevitably takes time - it depends on the speed with which Governments act, as well as IMO - and it can only be achieved at all by ensuring that the regulations adopted are very widely acceptable and this can take time.

But when speed is necessary IMO can act very rapidly indeed.

An example is the adoption in December 2002 of security measures - largely in response to the 11 September 2001 attacks in the United States.


The Organization consists of an Assembly, a Council and five main Committees: the Maritime Safety Committee; the Marine Environment Protection Committee; the Legal Committee; the Technical Co-operation Committee and the Facilitation Committee and a number of Sub-Committees support the work of the main technical committees.


This is the highest Governing Body of the Organization. It consists of all Member States and it meets once every two years in regular sessions, but may also meet in an extraordinary session if necessary. The Assembly is responsible for approving the work programme, voting the budget and determining the financial arrangements of the Organization. The Assembly also elects the Council.


The Council is elected by the Assembly for two-year terms beginning after each regular session of the Assembly.

The Council is the Executive Organ of IMO and is responsible, under the Assembly, for supervising the work of the Organization. Between sessions of the Assembly the Council performs all the functions of the Assembly, except the function of making recommendations to Governments on maritime safety and pollution prevention which is reserved for the Assembly by Article 15(j) of the Convention.

Other functions of the Council are to:


co-ordinate the activities of the organs of the Organization;


consider the draft work programme and budget estimates of the Organization and submit them to the Assembly;


receive reports and proposals of the Committees and other organs and submit them to the Assembly and Member States, with comments and recommendations as appropriate;


appoint the Secretary-General, subject to the approval of the Assembly;


enter into agreements or arrangements concerning the relationship of the Organization with other organizations, subject to approval by the Assembly.

Council members for the 2010-2011 biennium
Category (a)
: 10 States with the largest interest in providing international shipping services:


Republic of Korea
Russian Federation
United Kingdom
United states

Category (b):10 other States with the largest interest in international seaborne trade:



Category (c):20 States not elected under (a) or (b) above which have special interests in maritime transport or navigation, and whose election to the Council will ensure the representation of all major geographic areas of the world:





Saudi Arabia
South Africa

Maritime Safety Committee (MSC)

The MSC is the highest technical body of the Organization. It consists of all Member States. The functions of the Maritime Safety Committee are to "consider any matter within the scope of the Organization concerned with aids to navigation, construction and equipment of vessels, manning from a safety standpoint, rules for the prevention of collisions, handling of dangerous cargoes, maritime safety procedures and requirements, hydrographic information, log-books and navigational records, marine casualty investigations, salvage and rescue and any other matters directly affecting maritime safety".

The Committee is also required to provide machinery for performing any duties assigned to it by the IMO Convention or any duty within its cope of work which may be assigned to it by or under any international instrument and accepted by the Organization. It also has the responsibility for considering and submitting recommendations and guidelines on safety for possible adoption by the Assembly.

The expanded MSC adopts amendments to conventions such as SOLAS and includes all Member States as well as those countries which are Party to conventions such as SOLAS even if they are not IMO Member States.

The Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC)

The MEPC, which consists of all Member States, is empowered to consider any matter within the scope of the Organization concerned with prevention and control of pollution from ships. In particular it is concerned with the adoption and amendment of conventions and other regulations and measures to ensure their enforcement.

The MEPC was first established as a subsidiary body of the Assembly and raised to full constitutional status in 1985.


The MSC and MEPC are assisted in their work by nine sub-committees which are also open to all Member States. They deal with the following subjects:

Bulk Liquids and Gases (BLG) Carriage of Dangerous Goods, Solid Cargoes and Containers(DSC) Fire Protection (FP) Radio-communications and Search and Rescue (COMSAR) Safety of Navigation (NAV) Ship Design and Equipment (DE) Stability and Load Lines and Fishing Vessels Safety (SLF) Standards of Training and Watchkeeping (STW) Flag State Implementation (FSI)

Legal Committee

The Legal Committee is empowered to deal with any legal matters within the scope of the Organization. The Committee consists of all Member States of IMO. It was established in 1967 as a subsidiary body to deal with legal questions which arose in the aftermath of theTorrey Canyondisaster.

The Legal Committee is also empowered to perform any duties within its scope which may be assigned by or under any other international instrument and accepted by the Organization.

Technical Co-operation Committee

The Technical Co-operation Committee is required to consider any matter within the scope of the Organization concerned with the implementation of technical co-operation projects for which the Organization acts as the executing or co-operating agency and any other matters related to the Organization's activities in the technical co-operation field.

The Technical Co-operation Committee consists of all Member States of IMO, was established in 1969 as a subsidiary body of the Council, and was institutionalized by means of an amendment to the IMO Convention which entered into force in 1984.

Facilitation Committee

The Facilitation Committee was established as a subsidiary body of the Council in May 1972, and became fully institutionalised in December 2008 as a result of an amendment to the IMO Convention. It consists of all the Member States of the Organization and deals with IMO's work in eliminating unnecessary formalities and "red tape" in international shipping by implementing all aspects of the Convention on Facilitation of International Maritime Traffic 1965 and any matter within the scope of the Organization concerned with the faciliation of international maritime traffic. In particular in recent years the Committee's work, in accordance with the wishes of the Assembly, has been to ensure that the right balance is struck between maritime security and the facilitation of international maritime trade.


The Secretariat of IMO consists of the Secretary-General andsome 300 international personnel based at the headquarters of the Organization in London.


IMO has now five regional coordinators/advisors for technical co-operation activities, inCte d'Ivoire,Ghana,Kenya,Philippines andTrinidad and Tobago.

Budget 2010-2011

The IMO Assembly in November 2009 approved the Organization's budget for the next biennium, agreeing to a total appropriation of 61,151,200, comprising an appropriation of 30,290,900 for 2010 and an appropriation of 30,860,300 for 2011.

Contributions to the IMO budget are based on a formula which is different from that used in other United Nations agencies: the amount paid by each Member State depends primarily on the tonnage of its merchant fleet.


Port State Control (PSC) is the inspection of foreign ships in other national ports by PSC officers for the purpose of verifying that the competency of the master and officers on board, the condition of a ship and its equipment comply with the requirements of international conventions (SOLAS, MARPOL, STCW, etc.) and that the vessel is manned and operated in compliance with applicable international law.

The International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) is an international maritime safety treaty. The SOLAS Convention in its successive forms is generally regarded as the most important of all international treaties concerning the safety of merchant ships. The International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watch keeping for Seafarers sets qualification standards for masters, officers and watch personnel on seagoing merchant ships. STCW was adopted in 1978 by conference at the International Maritime Organization (IMO) in London, and entered into force in 1984. The Convention was significantly amended in 1995.

MARPOL 73/78:

Marpol 73/78 is the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution From Ships, 1973 as modified by the Protocol of 1978. ("Marpol" is short for marine pollution and 73/78 short for the years 1973 and 1978.) Marpol 73/78 is one of the most important international marine environmental conventions. It was designed to minimize pollution of the seas, including dumping, oil and exhaust pollution.


The ICS is the main trade association for the international shipping industry, representing all sectors of shipping. Its members include national ship owners' associations, which operate two-thirds of the world merchant tonnage. Founded in 1921, the ICS is concerned with technical, legal and policy issues that may have an impact on international shipping. It is actively involved with the following international organizations: IMO; Division of Ocean Affairs and Law of Sea(DOALOS), United Nations Conventions on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), United Nations Commission on International Trade Law(UNCITRAL), OECD, World Customs Organization(WCO), and WTO.


The ISF is the leading employers' organization for the international shipping industry. Its Members include national ship owners' associations, which together operate two thirds of the world merchant tonnage and employ a proportionate share of the 1.25 million seafarers. Founded in 1909, the ISF is concerned with all matters relating to labor, human resources, training, health and welfare of the seafarers. It is actively involved with the following international organizations: ILO, IMO, WHO. The ISF also enjoys a close relationship with national authorities and maritime authorities worldwide. The Maritime International Secretariat Services Limited (Marisec) administers both the offices of ICS and ISF.


HISTORY: established in 1961


MEMBERSHIP:34 countries

BUDGET: EUR 342 million



PUBLICATIONS250 new titles/year

Core activities:

Maritime Transport Committee Promotion of liberal shipping policies Promotion of quality shipping Competition policy Shipbuilding

The OECD's core values

Objective:Our analyses and recommendations are independent and evidence-based. Open:We encourage debate and a shared understanding of critical global issues. Bold: We dare to challenge conventional wisdom starting with our own. Pioneering:We identify and address emerging and long term challenges. Ethical:Our credibility is built on trust, integrity and transparency.

The Organisation for European Economic Cooperation (OEEC) was established in 1947 to run the US-financed Marshall Plan for reconstruction of a continent ravaged by war. By making individual governments recognise the interdependence of their economies, it paved the way for a new era of cooperation that was to change the face of Europe. Encouraged by its success and the prospect of carrying its work forward on a global stage, Canada and the US joined OEEC members in signing the new OECD Convention on 14 December 1960. The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) was officially born on 30 September 1961, when the Convention entered into force.

Other countries joined in, starting with Japan in 1964. Today, 34 OECD member countries worldwide regularly turn to one another to identify problems, discuss and analyse them, and promote policies to solve them. The track record is striking. The US has seen its national wealth almost triple in the five decades since the OECD was created, calculated in terms of gross domestic product per head of population. Other OECD countries have seen similar, and in some cases even more spectacular, progress.

So, too, have countries that a few decades ago were still only minor players on the world stage. China, India and Brazil have emerged as new economic giants. Most of the countries that formed part of the former Soviet bloc have either joined the OECD or adopted its standards and principles to achieve our common goals. Russia is negotiating to become a member of the OECD, and we now have close relations with Brazil, China, India, Indonesia and South Africa through our "enhanced engagement" programme. Together with them, the OECD brings around its table 40 countries that account for 80% of world trade and investment, giving it a pivotal role in addressing the challenges facing the world economy.

UNCTAD (United Nation's Conference on Trade and development)

Established :1964

Headquarters: Geneva

Member countries: 187

Objectives of UNCTAD:

To promote international trade and economic development of developing countries

To encourage consensus in favour of changes in world trade system

To provide special help to the poorest developing countries

Publishes the annual maritime review.


v Established in 1919, UN: 1946

v Secretariat in Geneva

v General conference once a year

v Conventions on work conditions and labour standards

v Maritime Conference every 10 years

v Adopted 32 maritime conventions and 25 recommendations (minimum wage)


The ILO has now shifted to a strategic focus in planning its biennial budget. Four strategic objectives guide the ILO programme and budget:

To promote and realize standards and fundamental principles and rights at work

To create greater opportunities for women and men to secure decent employment and income

To enhance the coverage and effectiveness of social protection for all

To strengthen tripartism and social dialogue


International Safety Management (ISM) code:

� Originally only passenger ships and tankers, from 2002 also cargo ships and drilling units

� Requires a safety management system to be established by the ship operator

ensuring compliance with all regulations and best practices incident reporting and analysis setting goals, principles and functions for a continous improvement process

� Designated person responsible for the safety of the ship

� Triggered by: Piracy in S.E. Asia, USS Cole, Sep 11


Location: Geneva,Switzerland
Established: 1January1995
Created by:Uruguay Round negotiations (1986-94)
MEMBERSHIP:153 countries on23July2008
BUDGET:196million Swiss francs for2011
Secretariat staff:640
Head:Pascal Lamy (Director-General)

Functions of WTO:

�Administering WTO trade agreements
�Forum for trade negotiations
�Handling trade disputes
�Monitoring national trade policies
�Technical assistance and training for developing countries
�Cooperation with other international organizations

The WTO was born out of negotiations, and everything the WTO does is the result of negotiations. The bulk of the WTO's current work comes from the 1986�94 negotiations called the Uruguay Round and earlier negotiations under the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT). The WTO is currently the host to new negotiations, under the �Doha Development Agenda' launched in 2001.

Where countries have faced trade barriers and wanted them lowered, the negotiations have helped to open markets for trade. But the WTO is not just about opening markets, and in some circumstances its rules support maintaining trade barriers � for example, to protect consumers or prevent the spread of disease.

At its heart are the WTO agreements, negotiated and signed by the bulk of the world's trading nations. These documents provide the legal ground rules for international commerce. They are essentially contracts, binding governments to keep their trade policies within agreed limits. Although negotiated and signed by governments, the goal is to help producers of goods and services, exporters, and importers conduct their business, while allowing governments to meet social and environmental objectives. It also means ensuring that individuals, companies and governments know what the trade rules are around the world, and giving them the confidence that there will be no sudden changes of policy. In other words, the rules have to be �transparent' and predictable.

Trade relations often involve conflicting interests. Agreements, including those painstakingly negotiated in the WTO system, often need interpreting. The most harmonious way to settle these differences is through some neutral procedure based on an agreed legal foundation. That is the purpose behind the dispute settlement process written into the WTO agreements.


A country should not discriminate between its trading partners and it should not discriminate between its own and foreign products, services or nationals.

More open

Lowering trade barriers is one of the most obvious ways of encouraging trade; these barriers include customs duties (or tariffs) and measures such as import bans or quotas that restrict quantities selectively.

Predictable and transparent

Foreign companies, investors and governments should be confident that trade barriers should not be raised arbitrarily. With stability and predictability, investment is encouraged, jobs are created and consumers can fully enjoy the benefits of competition � choice and lower prices.

More competitive

Discouraging �unfair' practices, such as export subsidies and dumping products at below cost to gain market share; the issues are complex, and the rules try to establish what is fair or unfair, and how governments can respond, in particular by charging additional import duties calculated to compensate for damage caused by unfair trade.

More beneficial for less developed countries

Giving them more time to adjust, greater flexibility and special privileges; over three-quarters of WTO members are developing countries and countries in transition to market economies. The WTO agreements give them transition periods to adjust to the more unfamiliar and, perhaps, difficult WTO provisions.

Protect the environment

The WTO's agreements permit members to take measures to protect not only the environment but also public health, animal health and plant health. However, these measures must be applied in the same way to both national and foreign businesses. In other words, members must not use environmental protection measures as a means of disguising protectionist policies.

While the WTO is driven by its member states, it could not function without its Secretariat to coordinate the activities. The Secretariat employs over 600 staff, and its experts � lawyers, economists, statisticians and communications experts � assist WTO members on a daily basis to ensure, among other things, that negotiations progress smoothly, and that the rules of international trade are correctly applied and enforced.


The WTO is run by its member governments. All major decisions are made by the membership as a whole, either by ministers (who usually meet at least once every two years) or by their ambassadors or delegates (who meet regularly in Geneva).

Trade negotiations

The WTO agreements cover goods, services and intellectual property. They spell out the principles of liberalization, and the permitted exceptions. They include individual countries' commitments to lower customs tariffs and other trade barriers, and to open and keep open services markets. They set procedures for settling disputes. These agreements are not static; they are renegotiated from time to time and new agreements can be added to the package. Many are now being negotiated under the Doha Development Agenda, launched by WTO trade ministers in Doha, Qatar, in November 2001.

Implementation and monitoring

WTO agreements require governments to make their trade policies transparent by notifying the WTO about laws in force and measures adopted. Various WTO councils and committees seek to ensure that these requirements are being followed and that WTO agreements are being properly implemented. All WTO members must undergo periodic scrutiny of their trade policies and practices, each review containing reports by the country concerned and the WTO Secretariat.

Dispute settlement

The WTO's procedure for resolving trade quarrels under the Dispute Settlement Understanding is vital for enforcing the rules and therefore for ensuring that trade flows smoothly. Countries bring disputes to the WTO if they think their rights under the agreements are being infringed. Judgements by specially appointed independent experts are based on interpretations of the agreements and individual countries' commitments.

Building trade capacity

WTO agreements contain special provision for developing countries, including longer time periods to implement agreements and commitments, measures to increase their trading opportunities, and support to help them build their trade capacity, to handle disputes and to implement technical standards. The WTO organizes hundreds of technical cooperation missions to developing countries annually. It also holds numerous courses each year in Geneva for government officials. Aid for Trade aims to help developing countries develop the skills and infrastructure needed to expand their trade.


The WTO maintains regular dialogue with non-governmental organizations, parliamentarians, other international organizations, the media and the general public on various aspects of the WTO and the ongoing Doha negotiations, with the aim of enhancing cooperation and increasing awareness of WTO activities.

Decision making process in WTO

The WTO's top-level decision-making body is the Ministerial Conference which usually meets every two years.

Below this is the General Council (normally ambassadors and heads of delegation in Geneva, but sometimes officials sent from members' capitals) which meets several times a year in the Geneva headquarters. The General Council also meets as the Trade Policy Review Body and the Dispute Settlement Body.

At the next level, the Goods Council, Services Council and Intellectual Property (TRIPS) Council report to the General Council.

Numerous specialized committees, working groups and working parties deal with the individual agreements and other areas such as the environment, development, membership applications and regional trade agreements.

BIMCO (Baltic and international maritime council)

Established: 1905

Location: Bagsvaerd, Denmark

Documentary committee meets twice per year

Core activity : Production of standard form.

Works in consultation with international agencies like IMO,UNCTAD,ILO,OPEC,WTO and Intertanko.

Objectives of BIMCO;

v BIMCO intervenes effectively on its members behalf with the intergovernmental organizations and national authorities.

v To develop free trade, access to markets, trade facilitation and promotion of quality and security.

v Promotion of standard documents

v To remain as a private, independent non political organization and be thus recognized by the governments and non governmental organizations.

v To focus on the key areas which yields the most benefit to the members .

v To provide the core activities such as intervention, charter party advice, IT products, training courses as well as maritime port related and company information

v To maintain contact with the other international maritime organizations and promote high shipping standards.


Membership is open to independent tanker owners and operators of oil and chemical tankers, i.e. non-oil companies and non-state controlled tanker owners, who fulfill the Association's membership criteria. Independent owners operate some 80% of the world's tanker fleet and the vast majority are INTERTANKO members. As ofJanuary 2011, the organization had 250 members, whose combined fleet comprisessome3,350 tankers totaling 285 million dwt. INTERTANKO's associate membership stands atsome 320 companies with an interest in shipping of oil and chemicals.

INTERTANKO is a forum where the industry meets, policies are discussed and statements are created. It is a valuable source of first-hand information, opinions and guidance. INTERTANKO has a vision of a professional, efficient and respected industry, that is dedicated to achieving safe transport, cleaner seas and free competition.

It is forum where tanker industry meets exchanges info. Collects opinions.

It has a strong working relationship with IMO, UNCTAD,ICAS, ICS,BIMCO,OCIMF.

It aims �safety, technical and environmental �communication and public relation.

Provides port information web and range tanker focused publications

It also produces market reports and analysis together with analysis of world tanker fleet in their annual report.

OPEC (Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries)

Established: September 14, 1960 in Baghdad, Iraq, by five Founder Members: Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and Venezuela. OPEC was registered with the United Nations Secretariat on November 6, 1962

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) is a permanent intergovernmental organization, currently consisting of 12 oil producing and exporting countries, spread across three continents America, Asia and Africa. The members are Algeria, Angola, Ecuador, the Islamic Republic of Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Libya, Nigeria, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates & Venezuela.. OPEC Member Countries produce about 42 per cent of the world's crude oil and 18 per cent of its natural gas. However, OPEC's crude oil exports represent about60 per cent of the crude oil traded internationally. Therefore, OPEC can have a strong influence on the oil market, especially if it decides to reduce or increase its level of production.

These countries have a population of more than408 million and for nearly all of them, oil is the main marketable commodity and foreign exchange earner. Thus, for these countries, oil is the vital key to development � economic, social and political. Their oil revenues are used not only to expand their economic and industrial base, but also to provide their people with jobs, education, health care and a decent standard of living.

The organization's principal objectives are:

1. To co-ordinate and unify the petroleum policies of the Member Countries and to determine the best means for safeguarding their individual and collective interests;

2. To seek ways and means of ensuring the stabilization of prices in international oil markets, with a view to eliminating harmful and unnecessary fluctuations; and

3. To provide an efficient economic and regular supply of petroleum to consuming nations and a fair return on capital to those investing in the petroleum industry.

TheOPEC Statutestipulates that: "any country with a substantial net export of crude petroleum, which has fundamentally similar interests to those ofMember Countries, may become a Full Member of the Organization, if accepted by a majority of three-fourths of Full Members, including the concurring votes of all Founder Members". The Statute further distinguishes between three categories of membership: Founder Member, Full Member and Associate Member.


Joined OPEC








Ecuador **

rejoined 2007

South America

IR Iran *


Middle East

Iraq *


Middle East



Middle East









Middle East

Saudi Arabia *


Middle East

United Arab Emirates


Middle East



South America


* founder Members
** Ecuador joined OPEC in 1973, suspended its membership from Dec. 1992-Oct. 2007

OCIMF(Oil companies international marine forum):

It has been granted consultative status by IMO.

Formed initially as oil industry's response to public awareness of marine pollution.

It sets the safety standards, guidelines for all oil related matters such as lightering, inspection, inspection of tankers.

Maintain database called SIRE (ship inspection and reporting)

Baltic Exchange:

International shipping exchange located in London .

Matching of ships and cargoes is its core business

Principals and others market their ships and cargoes on ITS WEBSITE

It provides online access to impartial freight market data in real time.

The electronic trading floor of Baltic is accessible globally and supplies date on thousands of ships and ports.

Baltic Exchange is the heart of global shipping industry and plays a pivotal role in world trade.

30% of all dry cargo,50% of all tanker fixtures and 50% all vessels bought or sold through Baltic Exchange.

Membership of Baltic is open to ship brokers, ship owners, charterers worldwide.

Baltic is the world's only provider of high quality independent freight market info covering dry and wet markets.

Freight derivatives market is also covered by Baltic.

International association of independent tanker owners

Formed in1970

It represents the tanker industry, transportation of liquid energy and chemicals.

It represents tanker owners-comprising of 165 million DWT

Intercargo (International association of dry cargo shipowners):

Located in London

Represents around 800 cargo vessels

Works closely with IMO ,BIMCO,IACS,ICS

Bulk carrier safety measures

Works closely with Intertanko and shares its office with it.

International Association of Classification Societies (ICAS)

Represents world's classification societies.

Classification societies such as LRS,ABS,,LRS etc establish and apply standards to the design, construction and survey of ships and offshore structures

LRS(Lloyds register),ABS(American bureau of shipping), BV(Bureau veritas), IRS(Indian Register Of Shipping) etc.

These also can be a recognized organization to satisfy on behalf of the administration on matters of safety under various Conventions-load line-MARPOL-SOLAS classification etc.

Classification under these societies however are not guranteers of safety of ship as they do not design man, operate, maintain a ship.

Ships are surveyed periodically by the classification societies and certificate of class is issued to the ships.

If on survey any defect is found the owners are to rectify/ repair the same under the supervision of these societies.

If the ship has a defect then the class imposes a condition on the ship.

When a condition of class is imposed on ship, her loading/steaming etc may be affected.

Ship-owner has to remove these conditions earliest to get back the class certificate to function at full speed without any condition on loading etc.

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