Port State Control

EMSA – The coastline of the European Union is many thousands of kilometres in length and contains well over 1 000 individual ports. These handle around 90% of EU external trade and around 40% of trade between EU countries. This involves handling 3.5 billion tonnes of goods and 350 million passengers being transported on thousands of ship journeys each year.

Consequently, it is vital that EU maritime transport operates in a safe, secure and environmentally friendly way. In support of these goals, and in addition to the systems and procedures in place in each country, the EU has put in place specific maritime legislation. The port State control Directive 2009/16/EC as amended* and its 3 implementing regulations** form a significant part thereof. This legislation aims to ensure that there is effective control of compliance with international standards by ships in EU ports and, thereby, ensure that ships sailing in EU waters have been appropriately constructed and are adequately maintained. In addition, Directive 1999/35/EC provides for a system of mandatory surveys for the ro-ro ferries and high speed passenger crafts to be carried out by the host States.

Against this background, EMSA has been given the technical responsibility for monitoring of port State control at EU level. This involves assessing the functioning of the port State inspection systems set up by individual EU members, undertaking a comprehensive analysis of global statistics relating to vessels calling at EU ports, as well as analysis of data on individual ship inspections. Risk assessment studies combined with statistical research provide results which are used to develop objectives and procedures for the continuous improvement of EU port State control performance.

In addition, the Agency carries out a number of supporting tasks in this area in order to ensure the overall effectiveness of the EU port State control system. These tasks include:

  • Providing technical assistance to the Commission and Member States in relation to the implementation of the Directive 2009/16/EC as amended;
  • Providing, upon the request of the Commission, technical assistance, including the organization of relevant training activities, to States applying for accession to the Union, to European Neighbourhood partner countries and to countries taking part in the Paris Mou;
  • Assisting the Commission in the publication of information relating to ship pursuant to the Directive 2009/16/EC;
  • Providing statistics, information and data to the Commission and Member States;
  • Providing technical assistance necessary for the Member States and the Commission to contribute to the relevant work of the technical bodies of the IMO, the ILO and Paris MoU;
  • Developing and implementing, in cooperation with Member States and the Commission, the information system (THETIS) which supports the inspection regime for port State control;
  • Developing and implementing a “Harmonized Community Scheme” for the training and assessment of competences of port state control inspectors by Member States;
  • Organising and delivering training through seminars for Port State Control Officers;
  • Developing, managing and operating a distance learning program for Port State Control Officers;
  • Developing, managing and operating a database (RuleCheck) of relevant documents published by IMO, ILO and port state control related document and procedures, to support PSCOs activity.

Port state control feedback is important for seafarers. Feedback from other crew will help to prepare others. Please give send your feedback here.



4 replies

  1. Sydney, Australia – MLC, Fire related safety, Life saving appliances are checked thoroughly. Some times inspectors prolong the inspection to 6-8 hours.
    Cargo related, stevedore related safety items are checked by stevedore company and they sometimes go overboard in finding deficiencies. They have their own requirement of stevedore safety which is called MO32. It is detailed inspection of stevedore working and cargo related part.


  2. Klaipeda, Lithuania – Supportive port state inspector, no stringent checking.


  3. Hamburg – Mostly water police checking Marpol related items. Personal fine if any deficiency found. Many Chief Engineers, Chief Officers and master were fined €50 to €200-300.


  4. Port of Antwerp – PSC inspectors are considerably good. They care and understand the problem seafarers are facing.
    Usually 3-4 hours of inspection.
    They give a chance to rectify any deficiency.


Thanks for your feedback.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: