IMO AT WORK
GMDSS modernization continues
he review and modernization of the Global Maritime Distress and Safety system (GMDSS) continued at the fourth session of the SubCommittee on Navigation, Communications and Search and Rescue (6-10 March). The GMDSS requirements in SOLAS Chapter IV were adopted in 1988 and ensure an integrated communications system using satellite and terrestrial radio communication systems. The meeting developed a draft modernization plan for the GMDSS for approval by the Maritime Safety Committee (MSC). The meeting also prepared draft amendments to SOLAS to accommodate additional, global or regional, mobile satellite systems. There were several agenda items related to e-navigation; also on the agenda were: the technical review of proposed new or amended ships’ routeing measures; the functioning and operation of the Long-Range Identification and Tracking (LRIT) system; and search and rescue related matters, including the harmonization of aeronautical and maritime search and rescue.
Myanmar study looks at port data exchange
feasibility study into the possible expansion of the Northeast Asia Logistics Information Service Network (NEAL-NET) has been undertaken in Myanmar, as part of a project co-funded by IMO and China. A team of consultants in Myanmar (5-6 March) met a range of stakeholders in the region and made a site visit to the port of Yangon. The aim was to gain a better understanding of existing systems of port logistics information and to identify the port or ports where NEAL-NET could be implemented. This is the second feasibility study made in the region, following one in Cambodia in February. NEAL-NET was established in 2010 by China, Japan and the Republic of Korea as a transnational, non-profit cooperative mechanism for logistics information exchange
and technological cooperation. The envisaged expansion of NEAL-NET is expected to support the implementation of the revised Facilitation Convention, which requires public authorities to establish systems for the electronic exchange of information relating to ships’ cargo, crew and passengers, by 8 April 2019. Once the feasibility studies have been completed, the countries concerned will be able to identify the technical and financial needs for possible inclusion in the NEAL-NET mechanism and will be in a position to apply for relevant funding from national or international institutions. IMO previously conducted national seminars on “Electronic means for the clearance of ships and use of the single window concept” in Cambodia (2014) and Myanmar (2013).
Breaking down barriers to energy-efficient shipping
MO’s work to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions from international shipping continued in Mumbai, India with a train-the-trainer course on energy-efficient ship operation. The course (28 February – 3 March) helped train maritime educators and officials to pass on expertise on the complex technical and regulatory aspects designed to make shipping greener. Thirty participants from Indian, Bangladeshi, Maldivian and Sri Lankan maritime training institutes, maritime administrations and classification societies took part. The training included group exercises in which the participants developed and delivered presentations on barriers to ship energy efficiency. The event was run under IMO’s GloMEEP project and hosted by the Directorate General Of Shipping, Indian Register of Shipping and the Indian National Shipowners’ Association.
The official magazine of the International Maritime Organization