The Republic of the Marshall Islands (RMI) has been recognized on the United States Coast Guard’s (USCG’s) QUALSHIP 21 roster for the period 1 July 2020-30 June 2021, as reported in the recently published USCG 2019 Annual Report. Approximately one-third of the QUALSHIP 21 certified vessels are flying the RMI flag which exemplifies the quality of the owners and operators in the fleet.
“We are proud to continue QUALSHIP 21 for our 16th unprecedented consecutive year,” said Bill Gallagher, President of International Registries, Inc. and its affiliates (IRI), which provide administrative and technical support to the RMI Registry. “To put this challenge into perspective, while the RMI Registry has once again earned this distinguished QUALSHIP 21 recognition, other major registries have struggled; one of these notable registries dropped off of QUALSHIP 21 and is now among one of those on again, off again flags targeted for added scrutiny by the USCG,” he continued.
“While the USCG three-year rolling average detention ratio slightly increased from 1.06% to 1.08%, we are more than proud to announce that the RMI flag detention ratio stands at 0.79%,” said Brian Poskaitis, Senior Vice President, Fleet Operations.
“Our sincere congratulations to the RMI Fleet Operations team for their close communication with our owners and operators, as well as the efficient and professional communication with the USCG and other port State control (PSC) authorities around the world,” continued Bill Gallagher. “The safety of our ships and crews, as well as protection of the marine environment remain priorities while we are navigating rough waters amid the COVID-19 pandemic,” he said.
The RMI Registry recently issued Marine Safety Advisory 13-20 which describes temporary alternative protocols during the COVID-19 pandemic. There is a dedicated webpage for RMI Registry updates regarding COVID-19. The Fleet Operations team is evaluating all RMI-flagged vessels coming due for inspection to determine the feasibility of a physical inspection or if temporary protocols may need to be put in place for specific vessels to allow for a remote inspection.
“We have conducted five remote inspections due to port restrictions with our first one in late March and have 36 remote inspections in the works for ships in Asia, Europe, and the United States,” said Brian Poskaitis. “Our strong network of Fleet Operations personnel across the globe has enabled the Registry to keep an open line of communication with PSC during this crisis,” he said. “All stakeholders engaged in transportation by sea are doing their utmost to maintain compliance with national and international regulations while also looking after the well-being of each individual and taking into account the disruptions faced due to COVID-19,” he continued.
“Our network of 28 worldwide offices has enabled us to operate with some offices open while others are closed and team members are working remotely during the pandemic; our global team has maintained a can do attitude and has continued to provide efficient and prompt service to all of our clients and ships,” said Bill Gallagher. “Quality as an organization is a continuous commitment for us,” he continued. “The USCG recognition further highlights the continuity of our efforts while we remain strongly dedicated to our owners, operators, and other industry stakeholders to ensure that safety and quality continue to be our focus and priority,” concluded Mr. Gallagher.