Amendments to the Ship Act

Taiwan's legislature recently passed an amendment to the Ship Act, which aims to improve navigation safety and to reduce accidents and pollution risks. The amendment addresses the following key points:

 1. The amendment formulates a set of standard operating procedures (SOP) with an inspecting and evaluation mechanism to promote safe operations and to grant pollution prevention certificates to qualifying passengers and cargo ships. Offenders will be prohibited from sailing, and will be fined an amount of between NTD 30,000 and NTD 150,000.

2. In addition, the amendment shortens the regular inspection cycle for those ships that have been used for more than 20 years, from a five-year inspection cycle to a two-year inspection cycle. The amendment also requires those ships to be undergone high-intensity inspections of equipment. Those who fail to comply with these inspection requirements will be prohibited from sailing and shall be required to make improvements within a set time limit, and will be fined an amount of between NTD 6,000 and NTD 60,000.

3. For a ship that has not had any outbound navigation records and has not been inspected for more than five years, the authority may revoke such ship's registration and disallow the ship from sailing anymore and from being transferred to others, as long as the ship owner has been duly notified and no interested parties have filed an objection.
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