Deadline Extended On STCW Convention Amendments

MARINE NOTICE 20/2016

AMSA’s approach to STCW Convention amendments due to take effect 1 January 2017

Purpose

The purpose of this Marine Notice is to bring to the attention of ship owners, ship operators, tug operators, ship masters, seafarers, colleges, classification societies, recruiting agents and unions that the International Maritime Organization (IMO) has recommended that Authorities take a pragmatic and practical approach with regard to seafarer documentation giving effect to the 2010 Manila amendments to International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW) until 30 June 2017.

Background

At its 97th session, the IMO Maritime Safety Committee (MSC) noted with concern that some seafarers have not yet been issued certificates compliant with the STCW Convention as amended in 2010.

Port State Control inspections

In accordance with IMO Circular MSC.1/Circ.1560 paragraph 5, AMSA has instructed its port State inspectors to take a practical and pragmatic approach to the exercise of control with respect to STCW seafarer documentation where that documentation complies with the requirements in place immediately before 1 January 2017.

Flag State inspections

In preparing for the introduction of the Manila amendments AMSA prescribed in Marine Orders that where a certificate was not revalidated in line with the Manila amendments it would expire on the 31 December 2016. In light of the outcome of MSC, AMSA has now issued an exemption under the Navigation Act 2012 permitting seafarers to be employed on Australian vessels with a certificate of competency, proficiency or safety training which would have complied with the requirements in place on or before 31 December 2016 and which would otherwise have expired.

These certificates will remain valid for service as follows:

  • Certificates of Competency issued on or after 1 July 2012 shall remain valid for service until 30 June 2017.
  • Certificates of Proficiency that were valid for service at sea on or before 
    31 December 2016 shall remain valid for service until 30 June 2017.
  • Certificates of Safety Training that were valid for service at sea on or before 
    31 December 2016 shall remain valid for service until 30 June 2017.

AMSA encourages all seafarers holding affected STCW certificates to arrange for revalidation of their current certificates at the earliest possible time.  Guidance on requirements is available here: http://www.amsa.gov.au/forms-and-publications/ international/fact-sheets/Seafarers/index.asp

A copy of MSC.1/Circ.1560 is available on the AMSA website at: http://www.amsa.gov.au/forms-and-publications/publications/MSC1Circ1560.pdf.

 

 

Brad Groves 
Acting Deputy Chief Executive Officer 
Australian Maritime Safety Authority
December 2016

GPO Box 2181 
CANBERRA ACT 2601

File No: 2016/3050