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					The Institute of Marine Engineering, Science and Technology (UK)

                                 BANGLADESH BRANCH

                                       Technical Seminar


                              ISPS Code
Enhancement of Maritime Security


                                Engr. Sajid Hussain, MSc

                                      Monday, March 1, 2004
                               Agrabad Hotel, Chittagong, Bangladesh

                                 The IMarEST
     Working to promote the development of marine engineering, science and technology, providing
     opportunities for the exchange of ideas and practices and upholding the status and knowledge of
                                marine professionals –
Since the tragic events of 9/11, there has been a heightened sense of security worldwide. The terrorist
attack on the French tanker Limburg off Yemen in October 2002 showed that immediate steps are
necessary to enhance maritime security. And so, the International Maritime Organization has adopted the
International Ship and Port Facility Security (ISPS) Code. It is a set of new maritime regulations designed
to help detect and deter threats to international security. This new and comprehensive security regime is
of crucial significance not only to the international maritime community but the world community as a
whole, as shipping being the centrepoint of the world trade. The December 2002 SOLAS Contracting
Governments Conference on Maritime Security adopted a new SOLAS chapter XI-2 on Special measures
to enhance maritime security and the ISPS Code. The Code applies to all SOLAS vessels over 500gt
engaged in international voyages and all port facilities serving such ships. All ships and port facilities
covered by the ISPS Code must implement the mandatory requirements by 1 July 2004.

        Requirements of the code include:
           • Ship Identification Number to be permanently marked on vessel’s hulls
           • Continuous Synopsis Record (CSR) kept onboard showing vessel history
           • Ship or Port Facility Security Assessment (SSA or PFSA)
           • Ship or Port Facility Security Plan (SSP or PFSP)
           • Ship or Port Facility Security Certificate (ISSC or PFSC[DOC])
           • Ship or Port Facility Security Officer (SSO or PFSO)
           • Comapny Security Officer (CSO)
           • Continuous ship to port seurity communication link
           • Training and drills
           • A Ship Security Alert System (SSAS)

The Code contains detailed security-related requirements for Governments, port authorities and shipping
companies in a mandatory section (Part A), together with a series of guidelines about how to meet these
requirements in a second, non-mandatory section (Part B). The IMO Conference (Dec 2002) also adopted
a series of resolutions designed to add weight to the amendments, encourage the application of the
measures to ships and port facilities not covered by the Code and pave the way for future work on the
subject. The UN General Assembly adopted a resolution on "Oceans and the law of the sea", which
specifically welcomed initiatives at the IMO to counter the threat to maritime security from terrorism and
encouraged States fully to support this endeavour.

In summary the ISPS Code:
    • enables the detection and deterrence of security threats within an international framework
    • establishes roles and responsibilities
    • enables collection and exchange of security information
    • provides a methodology for assessing security
    • ensures that adequate security measures are in place.

It requires ship and port facility staff to:
     • gather and assess information
     • maintain communication protocols
     • restrict access; prevent the introduction of unauthorised weapons, etc.
     • provide the means to raise alarms
     • put in place vessel and port security plans; and ensure training and drills are conducted.

In essence, the Code is basically a risk management system. Its purpose is to provide a standardized,
consistent framework for evaluating risk, enabling governments to offset changes in threat with changes
in vulnerability for ships and port facilities. Each Contracting Government will conduct port facility
security assessments having three essential components. First, they must identify and evaluate important
assets and infrastructures that are critical to the port facility as well as those areas or structures that, if
damaged, could cause significant loss of life or damage to the port facility's economy or environment.
Second, the assessment must identify the actual threats to those critical assets and infrastructure in order
to prioritise security measures. Finally, the assessment must address vulnerability of the port facility by
identifying its weaknesses in physical security, structural integrity, protection systems, procedural
policies, communications systems, transportation infrastructure, utilities, and other areas within a port
facility that may be a likely target.

This risk management concept is embodied in the Code through a number of minimum functional
security requirements for ships and port facilities. For ships, these requirements will include ship security
plans, ship security officers, company security officers and certain onboard equipment. For port facilities,
the requirements will include port facility security plans, port facility security officers and certain security
equipment; additionally, monitoring and controlling access, monitoring the activities of people and cargo
ensuring security communications are readily available. The preamble to the Code provides several ways
to reduce vulnerabilities. Ships will be subject to a system of survey, verification, certification, and control
to ensure that their security measures are implemented.

Under the terms of the Code, shipping companies will be required to designate a Company Security
Officer for the Company and a Ship Security Officer for each of its ships. The Company Security Officer's
responsibilities include ensuring that a Ship Security Assessment is properly carried out, that Ship
Security Plans are prepared and submitted for approval by (or on behalf of) the Administration and
thereafter is placed on board each ship. Ships will have to carry an International Ship Security Certificate
indicating the compliance. When a ship is at a port or is proceeding to a port of Contracting Government,
the Contracting Government has the right, under the provisions of regulation XI-2/9, to exercise various
control and compliance measures with respect to that ship.

Each Contracting Government has to ensure completion of a Port Facility Security Assessment for each
port facility within its territory that serves ships engaged on international voyages. The Port Facility
Security Assessment is fundamentally a risk analysis of all aspects of a port facility's operation in order to
determine which parts of it are more susceptible, and/or more likely, to be the subject of attack. Security
risk is seen a function of the threat of an attack coupled with the vulnerability of the target and the
consequences of an attack. Port Facility Security Plan should indicate the operational and physical
security measures the port facility should take to ensure that it always operates at security level 1. The
plan should also indicate the additional, or intensified, security measures the port facility can take to
move to and operate at security level 2 when instructed to do so. It should also indicate the possible
preparatory actions the port facility could take to allow prompt response to the instructions that may be
issued at security level 3.

In order to communicate the threat at a port facility or for a ship, the Contracting Government will set the
appropriate security level. Security levels 1, 2, and 3 correspond to normal, medium, and high threat
situations, respectively; and approving the Ship Security Plan and relevant amendments to a previously
approved plan, verifying the compliance of ships and issuing the International Ship Security Certificate,
determining which port facilities located within their territory are required to designate a Port Facility
Security Officer, ensuring completion and approval of the Port Facility Security Assessment and the Port
Facility Security Plan and any subsequent amendments; and exercising control and compliance measures.
It is also responsible for communicating information to the IMO and to the shipping and port industries.

Contracting Governments can designate, or establish, Designated Authorities within Government to
undertake their security duties and allow Recognised Security Organisations to carry out certain work
with respect to port facilities, but the final decision on the acceptance and approval of this work should
be given by the Contracting Government or the Designated Authority.

Modifications to Chapter V (Safety of Navigation) contain a new timetable for the fitting of Automatic
Information Systems (AIS). Ships, other than passenger ships and tankers, of 300 gross tonnage and
upwards but less than 50,000 gross tonnage, will be required to fit AIS not later than the first safety
equipment survey after 1 July 2004 or by 31 December 2004, whichever occurs earlier.

The existing SOLAS Chapter XI (Special measures to enhance maritime safety) has been re-numbered as
Chapter XI-1. Regulation XI-1/3 is modified to require ships' identification numbers to be permanently
marked in a visible place either on the ship's hull or superstructure. Passenger ships should carry the

marking on a horizontal surface visible from the air. Ships should also be marked with their ID numbers

And a new Regulation XI-1/5 requires ships to be issued with a Continuous Synopsis Record (CSR) which
is intended to provide an on-board record of the history of the ship. The CSR shall be issued by the
Administration and shall contain information such as the name of the ship and of the State whose flag the
ship is entitled to fly, the date on which the ship was registered with that State, the ship's identification
number, the port at which the ship is registered and the name of the registered owner(s) and their
registered address. Any changes shall be recorded in the CSR so as to provide updated and current
information together with the history of the changes.

A brand-new Chapter XI-2 is added after the renumbered Chapter XI-1. Few of its Regulations are
mentioned here. Regulation XI-2/2 states that this chapter applies to passenger ships and cargo ships of
500 gross tonnage and upwards, including high speed craft, mobile offshore drilling units and port
facilities serving such ships engaged on international voyages. Regulation XI-2/3 states the obligation of
setting security levels. Regulation XI-2/4 states the requirements for Companies and Ships. Regulation XI-
2/5 states specific responsibility of Comanies.

Regulation XI-2/6 requires all ships to be provided with a ship security alert system, according to a strict
timetable that will see most vessels fitted by 2004 and the remainder by 2006. When activated the ship
security alert system shall initiate and transmit a ship-to-shore security alert to a competent authority
designated by the Administration, identifying the ship, its location and indicating that the security of the
ship is under threat or it has been compromised. The system will not raise any alarm on-board the ship.
The ship security alert system shall be capable of being activated from the navigation bridge and in at
least one other location. Regulation XI-2/8 confirms the role of the Master in exercising his professional
judgement over decisions necessary to maintain the security of the ship. It says he shall not be
constrained by the Company, the charterer or any other person in this respect.

Other regulations in this chapter cover the provision of information to IMO, the control of ships in port,
(including measures such as the delay, detention, restriction of operations including movement within
the port, or expulsion of a ship from port), and the specific responsibility of Companies.

The conference adopted 11 resolutions as follows:
   1. Adoption of amendments to the annex to the international convention for the safety of life at sea,
       1974, as amended.
   2. Adoption of the International Ship and Port Facility Security (ISPS) Code.
   3. Further work by the international maritime organization pertaining to the enhancement of
       maritime security.
   4. Future amendments to Chapters XI-1 and XI-2 of the 1974 SOLAS Convention on special
       measures to enhance maritime safety and security.
   5. Promotion of technical co-operation and assistance.
   6. Early implementation of the special measures to enhance maritime security.
   7. Establishment of appropriate measures to enhance the security of ships, port facilities, mobile
       offshore drilling units on location and fixed and floating platforms not covered by chapter XI-2 of
       the 1974 SOLAS Convention.
   8. Enhancement of security in co-operation with the International Labour Organization.
   9. Enhancement of security in co-operation with the World Customs Organization.
   10. Early implementation of long-range ships' identification and tracking.
   11. Human element-related aspects and shore leave for seafarers.

IMO has published three model courses; The ISPS – Company Security Officer, The ISPS – Port Facility
Security Officer, and The ISPS – Ship Security Officer. Videotel Marine International has released the
Shipboard Security distance learning pakage for SSOs (approved by the MCA, UK). It consists of an
interactive CD-ROM based training package, or a video and printed course book. This course may take 21

hours and can be completed while at sea. A candidate’s assessment is done by independent third-party

Meanwhile, German ship management software specialist AVECS has launched an electronic solution for
the ISPS Code. The AVECS ISPS Programme is designed to minimize the effort needed to implement the
enhanced security regulations within a company and allow electronic recording of evidence both in the
office and onboard with quick access to information, reduced paperwork and saving time and also aiding
to seafarers’ education and training. This software received certification from Germanischer Lloyd,
Lloyd’s Register, Det Norske Veritas and RINA.

Foreshore Publications has recently published a book named ISPS Code – A practical Guide for
additional help and guidance. The ISPS Ship and Port Practical Packs (partially available at the Lloyd’s
Register of Shipping website – help to adopt a management systems approach in developing
ship and port security plans and defining management responsibilities under the ISPS Code.

Germanischer Lloyd and other IACS members have come with their individual training packages.
Lloyd’s Register Group is launching SeeThreat, a powerful new web-based risk assessment tool which
helps ship operators and their company security officers (CSO) to assess the security threat to their ships.
SeeThreat continually scans news networks and provides you with the specific information you’ll need to
make critical security decisions cost effectively.

Some recent reports/surveys carried out by Governments and other interested parties (including
industry organizations such as ICS, IAPH, BIMCO, IACS, INTERTANKO and INTERCARGO) on the
status of implementation of the security measures have raised concerns that not enough progress has
been achieved so far. Some 30,000 to 40,000 ships, worldwide, require an International Ship Security
Certificate (ISSC) from an independent and approved body and 15,000 to 20,000 ports have to be
approved by their Contracting Governments by July 2004. Point to ponder that neither chapter XI-2 of
SOLAS nor the ISPS Code provide for any extension of the implementation dates.

IMO has urged (MSC/Circ.1104; 15 January 2004) the SOLAS Contracting Governments, port authorities,
classification societies, recognized security organizations, training institutions and all other parties
concerned to REDOUBLE their efforts to protect shipping against terrorism. Administrations should
advise companies and ships operating under their countries' flag to take appropriate steps to increase
awareness of the potential dangers so that their crews are extremely vigilant and alert to any security
threat they may encounter or be suspicious of, whether they are in port, at offshore terminals or
underway. IMO Council has emphasised that IMO’s theme for the current year should be: "IMO 2004:
Focus on maritime security".

Life onboard might be getting abit more complicated. Spontaneous shore-leave and free access to and
from the ship through the ports’ gate might get barred. However, ‘unique-numbered SmartCARD’ for 1.5
million seafarers worldwide as their identity might provide an easy solution (ref: ILO’s work for
Seafarers’ Identity Document). The duties of the designated ‘security officer’ will be another ‘extra’ load
on some watchkeeping officers. Crewing level is now already at a minimum and tends to reduce more.
Imposing these ‘extra ISPS duties’ will need due consideration in line with the ‘safe manning’. Ship
should operate with statutory hours of rest and other measures designed to address fatigue.

It seems that industry is now ‘linking’ safety with security. Companies cannot train seafarers as anti-
terrorist experts! Then how is the industry supposed to defend itself without them? It is felt that
passengers will not feel comfortable seeing officers with guns. The ISPS Code itself mandates no security
hardware other than the Ship Security Alert. The decision to carry guns (if allowed) is that of the
company and not a requirement of the code. The carrying of such weapons however may generate other
problems with port authorities. We should not advocate merchant shipping carrying firearms in ANY
circumstances. Therefore, threats must be mitigated primarily through the management system not
through the use of arms.

Designated Authority has been composed with representatives from all concerned departments.
Chittagong and Mongla seaports have been designated to receive the ship-to-shore security alerts.
Mercantile Marine Department has been designated to receive all-time communication from ships. Area
Commanders, Coast Guard of Chittagong and Mongla have been designated to provide advice or
assistance. Chittagong and Mongla seaports have appointed their Port Facility Security Officers and have
appointed Germanischer Lloyd (GL) as their RSO; the preparation of Port Facility Security Assessment
and Plans are expected to be completed by April. BSC, HRC, QC and other shipping companies have
appointed their CSOs and have appointed GL and Det Norske Veritas as their RSO for ships; Ship
Security Assessment and Plan for these ships are expected to be completed by March. Informatively, the
local office of GL, having approved Maritime Security Auditor, has been designated as the approved
office for India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. Necessary training is being provided by GL Academy and other
training institutions. Like all success before, hopefully Bangladesh will also cross the ‘ISPS bar’ by March
2004 i.e. well before the deadline of 1 July 2004.

The world has changed and security has become a way of life; where ‘normalcy’ has transformed into
LEVEL 1 (not LEVEL 0)! IMO will publish a ‘White List’ of ports with approved port facility security
plans (PFSP). The security of the ship is at all times the responsibility of the company. IACS will also
publish a "white list" of ships issued with an International Ship Security Certificate (ISSC). A ship not
having a valid ISSC will, by definition, be outside international requirements. Therefore it’s time to come
together; all concerned authorities, institutions and personnel should work hand in hand to bring the
shipping world to SAFE-SECURED ‘LEVEL 0’.
Class 1 Marine Engineer (UK), MSc (Sweden)
Chief Engineer, Marine Academy, Bangladesh
Maritime Expert/Consultant (IMO)
Ex-Hon. Asst. Secretary (1994-96), Bangladesh branch of IMarE (UK)
General Secretary, WMU Alumni Association of Bangladesh (WAAB)

    •    IMO Website —
    •    IMO’s ISPS Code – 2003 edition
    •    IMO MSC/Circ 1067 & 1097
    •    IMO News magazine 1/2003 issue
    •    Transport Canada website —
    •    INMARSAT Website –
    •    Germanischer Lloyd website –
    •    GL Guidelines
    •    Lloyds Register website –
    •    Lloyds Register – ISPS Code Practical Pack
    •    Port of Singapore magazine – December 2003 isue
    •    Transport International magazine of ITF – 2/2003 issue
    •    Ocean Voice magazine – Oct-Dec 2003 & Jan-Mar 2004 issues

About the author
After graduating from Marine Academy in 1980, Engr. Sajid Hussain had served on-board BSC ships in the ranks of
Cadet Engineer to Chief Engineer till 1993; since 1993 teaching in the Marine Academy and since 1995 as its Chief
Engineer (Head of Engineering Dept); achieved his Class ONE Marine Engineer Certificate of Competency from UK
in 1989 and MSc (Maritime Safety Administration – Marine Engineering) Degree from World Maritime University,
Sweden in 1998; actively attached with the Bangladesh Branch of the Inst. of Marine Engineers (UK) since its
inception in 1989; performed as the Honorary Assistant Secretary of this branch from 1994 to 1996. Engr. Sajid Hussain
has presented, so far, 6 technical papers in various IMarE/IMarEST seminars; a maritime expert/consultant of IMO
(nominated in 1999); also an amateur writer of maritime affairs, sea-life, computer technology and literature as well.
His publications include 5 books ('A proposal for establishment of a maritime university in Bangladesh', 'Computer:
Janar ache anek kichu', 'Esho Computer-er Rajjey', 'AutoCAD 2002 – Hatekhari', and 'Ekattorer Prometheus') and
over 100 features. His contact: or 031-611535, 0171-012136.


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