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Brunei continues to improve maritime situation nationally

Brunei continues to improve maritime situation nationally
October 22, 2018

SHIPPING constitutes more than 80 per cent of world trade, transporting goods and services to people and communities worldwide, said Minister of Communications Dato Seri Setia Awang Abdul Mutalib bin Pehin Orang Kaya Seri Setia Dato Paduka Haji Mohd Yusof in a message to mark World Maritime Day 2018.

The International Maritime Organization (IMO) has worked hard to ensure that people all over the world are able to obtain benefits from shipping through methods that, among others, fulfil global economic requirements, ever-changing customer expectations, protection of the environment and social responsibility, he said.

The message: “Looking at the importance of shipping to global economic activities, therefore the World Maritime Day theme this year – ‘IMO 70: Our Heritage – Better Shipping For A Better Future’ – is accurate and timely in giving recognition to the role of shipping, its seamlessness and safety worldwide.

“It also looks at history and the future in giving opportunities to reflect and exhibit how IMO has developed and adapted while still staying committed and loyal to its overall mission to promote safe, secure, environmentally friendly and sustainable shipping.

“More than 50 international instruments adopted by the IMO include all aspects of international shipping.

“Even though compliance to these standards has been a challenge for the shipping industry, nonetheless IMO’s biggest achievement has been to provide an arena for fair competition through global regulations implemented to ensure that shipping operators do not jeopardise nor compromise global shipping safety.

“This approach encourages innovation and efficiency and through it, IMO for 70 years has succeeded in pushing forward progress in shipping presently for the future.

“Brunei Darussalam, via ratification of 20 conventions and annexes to date, is not left behind in this effort to fulfil IMO requirements.

“Brunei Darussalam as a member state of IMO since 1984 extends its continuous support to the World Maritime Day and specifically IMO as the international regulatory body focussing on the importance of shipping safety, maritime security and the maritime environment.

“In the 70 years since its establishment in 1948, the IMO has undergone changes in a multitude of aspects including the international agenda as well as challenges in ensuring obligational compliance by all member states.

“Brunei Darussalam, through the Maritime and Port Authority of Brunei Darussalam (MPABD) is hoped to continuously adapt and improve the maritime situation nationally to fulfil IMO standards and regulations.

“Since its establishment on September 28, 2017, MPABD, as the statutory board set up under the Ministry of Communications, is responsible for the management, administration and security of maritime and port affairs of Brunei Darussalam in line with international standards.

“In this respect, among the steps taken by MPABD will be to take over the registration of all shipping, freight forwarding, stevedorage and transportation agents providing services at all ports in Brunei Darussalam by November 2018.

“This role is carried out in cooperation with the Royal Customs and Excise Department, Ministry of Finance by utilising the Brunei Darussalam National Single Window as a platform.

“As an initiative to promote the domestic shipping sector, MPABD has appointed Classic Reliance Bureau (CRB) as the domestic classification society responsible to carry out surveys and inspections of non-conventional ships weighing less than 500 gross tonnage registered under the Brunei Darussalam flag.

“CRB will also be responsible to ensure ships comply with requirements and standards as set by MPABD.

“In ensuring shipping safety, safety requirements and standards in Brunei Darussalam waters also need to be intensively monitored.

“MPABD will also improve the training syllabus of local boat drivers to continuously increase and improve their competency.

“Apart from the need to ensure that the domestic shipping sector is in order, MPABD will also ensure that international standard requirements are obeyed through the drafting of four main regulations related to safety, environmental pollution and maritime human resource competency standards.

“To ensure domestic maritime safety, MPABD is also in the process of updating the Harbour Craft Regulations to improve and further strengthen safety for passengers and domestic boats in Brunei Darussalam waters, especially in the Brunei River.

“With all these initiatives, MPABD in line with IMO requirements will administrate, manage and regulate port and maritime services and facilities in the country to realise the improvement and development of Muara Port as a port of choice at par with other regional ports.

“This is Brunei Darussalam’s contribution towards realisation of the World Maritime Day theme to create an international shipping environment that is safe, efficient and environmentally friendly.

“Cooperation from the public is very much hoped for, to ensure maritime safety, not only at the international level, but also in our domestic waters as safety is a global responsibility for all.”