Source: The Jakarta Post
Date: May 3, 2021

Through the effort of the Transportation Ministry's Sea and Coast Guard Unit (KPLP), Indonesia is now eligible for Tokyo MoU's White List criteria, based on the organization's 2020 annual report.

Tokyo MoU aims to reduce the operation of substandard ships through cooperation in member states. Each ship is required to apply International Maritime Organization (IMO) and International Labor Organizations standards, including safety, maritime environmental protection, working conditions and living standards.

Indonesia's inclusion on Tokyo MoU's White List serves as recognition of Indonesia's Port State Control (PSC) as well as the world's trust in Indonesia's safety and security in maritime affairs.

This also signifies the competitiveness of Indonesian ports. R. Agus H. Purnomo, the sea transportation director general, said in a statement that Indonesia's inclusion on the White List was an improvement, as it was previously on the Grey List.

"The assessment of flagship performance by the Tokyo MoU Port State Control Committee is based on the binomial calculation method, accumulated over the course of three years simultaneously," he said.

The annual report is a compilation of merchant ship inspections done by Tokyo MoU members, which are composed of 21 full member nations in the Asia Pacific region. White List nations include Sweden, Chile, Switzerland, the United States, Italy and Bangladesh.

Prior to the recategorization, Indonesia was previously a Black List country before being put on the Grey List. Over the past three years, the Directorate of Sea Transportation and the KPLP have made numerous efforts to raise Indonesia's status, including instructing Indonesian flagships sailing outside the country to be inspected by port state control officers (PSCO) alongside safety officers in a 2018 circular letter.

"The circular letter provides a legal basis for PSCOs in inspecting Indonesian flagships planning to sail into international waters," Agus said, noting Tanjung Priok Port as an example where the policy had taken place.  

(Courtesy of Kementerian Perhubungan/.)

KPLP director Ahmad said that with the inspection, Indonesian flagships would undergo a rigorous and thorough examination, with some ships not given permission to sail as they are at high risk of being detained overseas.

"One of the latest examples was on May 19, 2020, when the Indonesian-flagged MV CTP HONOUR GT 5906 bound for Port Klang was delayed, as the inspection found some deficiencies that needed to be rectified prior to the journey to avoid the risk of detainment at Port Klang," he explained.

Ahmad noted that the strict inspections had had a positive result for sailing in Indonesia, as Indonesia's inclusion on the White List would be a factor in committee assessments on ship risk levels that would influence cargo owners' trust in Indonesian ships.

He continued by saying that the challenge was now in maintaining the White List status in the coming years, assisted by the creation of a new organization called Ship Safety Inspection – Center of Excellence.

"This organization's main objective is to support the Transportation Ministry in training marine inspectors and port state control officers to be able to inspect both Indonesian and foreign ships, so that they can have skills on par with world-class ship safety inspection standards."