Organizations & Conventions

International Maritime Conventions
The following conventions and protocols enables the Liberian Registry to continue to render quality service to its customers while meeting our obligations to the International Maritime Organization (IMO). These conventions and protocols were ratified in 2008 and are being implemented:

1. The International Convention on Civil Liability for Bunker Oil Pollution Damage (Bunkers) 2001, which ensures that adequate, prompt, and effective compensation is available for persons who suffer damage caused by spills of oil when carried as fuel in ship bunkers. It also applies to damage caused on the territory including the territorial sea, and in exclusive economic zones of a state party. The Bunker Convention requires the registered owner of a vessel to maintain compulsory insurance coverage. It further allows injured parties to file claims for compensation for pollution damage directly against an insurer. This convention ensures that Liberian shipowners are covered by an international liability compensation regime.

2. The International Convention On the Control Of Harmful Anti-fouling System On Ships (AFS) 2001, which prohibits the use of harmful Organ Tin Compounds when acting as biocides in anti-fouling paints used on ships and establishes a mechanism to prevent the potential future use of other harmful substances in anti- fouling systems on ships flying the flag of state party to the convention. This Convention will enable Liberia to contribute greatly to the reduction of harmful environment and ensure that Liberian ship operators are not placed at a competitive disadvantage.

3. International Convention for The Control And Management of Ships' Ballast Water and Sediments, 2004, which requires that ship, not only have onboard, but also implement a ballast water management plan, which ensures that water is poured into the tank of the ship to balance it when it doesn't have Cargo onboard. The convention also allows Liberian registered ships to enjoy the same privilege as other registered ships and will not face the possibility of being banned from entering certain ports or territorial waters.

4. Convention on Limitation of Liability For Maritime Claims, (LLMC), 1976, As Amended By the 1996 Protocol, (entered into force in May 2004), which significantly increases the liability limits for a number of Maritime claims.

5. International Convention on Liability and Compensation for Damage in Connection with the Carriage of Hazardous and Noxious Substances by Sea (HNS), 1996, which establishes an international liability compensation regime rather than leaving the current regional schemes.

6. Protocol on Preparedness, Response and Co-operation to pollution incidents by Hazardous and Noxious Substances, 2000 (OPRC/HNS Protocol), which ensures that ships carrying hazardous and noxious liquid substances are covered by regimes similar to those already in existence for oil incidents.

7. International Convention on Salvage, 1989 (SALVAGE 1989), which makes a provision for an enhanced salvage award taking into account the skills and efforts of the salvors in preventing or minimizing damage to the environment.

8. Torremolinos Convention for the Safety of Fishing Vessels 1977 – also includes Torremolinos Protocol of 1993, which provides for the overall safety with regards to regulations for the construction and equipment of fishing vessels.



Other Conventions Ratified by Liberia
Liberia also ratified and submitted the following conventions:

1994 Amendments to the Convention on International Maritime Satellite Organization, 1976 (INMARSAT Amendments 94), which changed the name of the organization to the International Mobile Satellite Organization and changed Article 13 on the composition of the Inmarsat Council.

United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS 1982) which lays down a comprehensive regime of law and order in the world's oceans and seas establishing rules governing all uses of the oceans and their resources.

The International Labor Organization (ILO) Convention, 2006, which addresses minimum standards for the employee working conditions, repatriation, entitlement, and leave, as well as the standards for onboard working and living accommodation, social protection and welfare of seafarers.



Technical and Regional Organizations
As a leader in the maritime industry, the Liberia Maritime Authority is an active member of the International Maritime Organization along with the following organizations:

International Labor Organization (ILO)
Due to the global nature of the shipping industry, the International Labor Organization (ILO) aims to protect the rights of the world's more than 1.2 million seafarers. It helps establish international standards for the safe working conditions for human life on the sea. LiMA actively participates in relevant annual ILO meetings and often provides assistance to Liberian seafarers to participate in such meetings. It also works collaboratively with the Ministry of Labor of the Republic of Liberia to ensure compliance with various maritime labor conventions. For more information on the functions and of the ILO, click here.

United Nations Environmental Protection Agency (UNEP)
The United Nations Environmental Protection Program (UNEP) coordinates the United Nations environmental activities and has aided in the development of guidelines and treaties on issues, such as the international trade of potentially harmful chemicals, trans-boundary air pollution, and the contamination of international waterways. Founded in June 1972, it has played a significant role by using scientific information to develop international environmental conventions and policies in collaboration with national governments, regional institutions, and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs). UNEP has also been active in funding and implementing environmentally related development projects. www.unep.org

International Maritime Satellite Organization (INMARSAT)
INMARSAT is an international telecommunications company originally operating as an intergovernmental organization. It provides telephony and data services to users worldwide via special terminals which communicate to ground stations through twelve geosynchronous telecommunication satellites. Inmarsat's network provides reliable communication services to a range of governments, aid agencies, media outlets and businesses with a need to communicate in remote regions or where there is no reliable terrestrial network. INMARSAT was established in 1979, with Liberia being a founding member. The Liberia Maritime Authority is a signatory to the Protocol establishing INMARSAT, and represents the Republic of Liberia. For more information on the functions and of the Inmarsat, click here.

Maritime Organization of West and Central Africa (MOWCA)
The Maritime Organization of West and Central Africa (MOWCA), Africa's only sub-regional sectoral maritime body dedicated to providing a platform for handling all maritime transit/transport matters common to its 25 Member States, was established in 1975. Based in Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire, MOWCA comprises 20 coastal and five landlocked countries, from Mauritania to Angola. MOWCA is currently implementing a number of sub-regional projects and programs, which focus on the Abidjan Charter, the Millennium Development Goals, global maritime safety and security challenges, the Almaty Program of Action and the African Union Maritime Action Plan. For more information on MOWCA, please click here.

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