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Audit scheme is mandatory

Audit scheme is mandatory
At this week?s IMO Assembly, it was agreed that the member state audit scheme is to be made mandatory under a plan to institutionalise it.

At this week"s IMO Assembly, it was agreed that the member state audit scheme is to be made mandatory under a plan to institutionalise it.

At this week"s IMO Assembly, it was agreed that the member state audit scheme is to be made mandatory under a plan to institutionalise it.

According to the plan, amendments to the instruments would be adopted in 2013, for entry into force in January 2015. Preparatory work for the commencement of an institutionalised scheme would be carried out during 2014.

The Assembly urged member states that have not yet volunteered for audits under the current, voluntary scheme to do so, so that lessons can continue to be learned from it. It also asked the Secretary-General to take action, within the IMO's integrated technical co-operation programme, to assist member states to participate in the scheme and with building capacity to address related needs.

Also agreed was a new six year strategic plan to supersede the previous version. It identified strategic directions that will enable IMO to achieve its objectives in the years ahead.

High-priority areas reflected in the strategic directions and high-level actions included:

*Addressing the prevention and repression of acts of piracy and armed robbery against ships, in particular off the coast of Somalia and in the Gulf of Aden, and promoting capacity-building for that purpose in the affected countries.

*Strengthening consideration of the human element in the rule-making process, and making adequate preparations to support the effective implementation of the revised International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW Convention) and STCW Code, due to be adopted in June 2010.

*Contributing to worldwide efforts to address the phenomena of climate change and global warming, through the introduction of appropriate measures to limit and reduce greenhouse gas emissions from ships.

*Promoting and raising the profile, quality and environmental consciousness of shipping.

*Identifying and addressing any capacity-building or other needs related to the safety or environmental aspects of ships not covered by IMO instruments (eg small vessels or vessels engaged solely in domestic trade).

At the end of the meeting, Secretary-General Efthimios Mitropoulos said that IMO stood ready to face any new challenges.

Focusing specifically on next week's UNFCCC COP 15, he reiterated his view that IMO member states should be united in their common goal to address climate change, while ensuring that ?the complexities of this most international of all industries [shipping] are duly taken into account when shaping their countries" official policies and determining their position on the issue at hand ? both at Copenhagen and at the post-Copenhagen rounds of consultations at IMO and elsewhere?.

www.TurkishMaritime.com.tr

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