Under the provisions of SOLAS 1974/1988 regulation I/6, MARPOL Annex I regulation 6, MARPOL Annex II regulation 8, MARPOL Annex IV regulation 4, MARPOL Annex VI regulation 5, LLC 1966/1988 article 13, TONNAGE 1969 article 7 and AFS 2001 Annex 4 regulation 1, the inspection and survey of ships shall be carried out by officers of the flag Administration. The flag Administration may, however, entrust the inspections and surveys either to surveyors nominated for the purpose or to organizations recognized by it.
In the above context, IMO adopted resolutions A.739(18) on Guidelines for the authorization of organizations acting on behalf of the Administration and A.789(19) on Specifications on the survey and certification functions of recognized organizations (ROs) acting on behalf of the Administration.
Recently, IMO, recognizing the need to update the aforementioned resolutions, to gather all the applicable requirements for recognized organizations in a single IMO mandatory instrument and to assist in achieving harmonized and consistent global implementation of requirements established by IMO instruments for the assessment and authorization of recognized organizations, adopted the Code for Recognized Organizations (RO Code) by resolutions MEPC.237(65) and MSC.349(92), which entered into force on 1 January 2015 under MARPOL annexes I and II, SOLAS 1974 and the 1988 Load Line Protocol. The Code, parts 1 and 2 of which are mandatory, while part 3 is recommendatory, provides a consolidated instrument containing criteria against which ROs are assessed and authorized/recognized, and gives guidance for subsequent monitoring of ROs by Administrations.
As required by the relevant provisions of the aforementioned Conventions, the flag Administrations shall communicate information regarding ROs to IMO. In this regard, reporting under MSC/Circ.1010-MEPC/Circ.382 on flag States' authorizations to carry out surveys and issue certificates on their behalf, can be arranged using the GISIS module on Recognized Organizations which can be accessed by Members (resolution A.1074(28) on notification and circulation through GISIS).