IMO Resolutions in force in late 2023 and 2024

February 2024

Key Amendments to SOLAS 74

IMO Resolution In force on
MSC.474(102) 01 Jan 2024
MSC.475(102) 01 Jan 2024
MSC.482(103) 01 Jan 2024
MSC.496(105) 01 Jan 2024
MSC. 508, 510, 511, 512, 513, 515, 516 & 517(105) 01 Jan 2024
MSC.500(105) 01 Dec 2023
MSC.501(105) 01 Jan 2024
MSC.521(106) & MSC.527(106) 01 Jul 2024
MSC.525(106) 01 Jul 2024

Regulation II-1/3-8 – Towing and Mooring Equipment

MSC.474(192) – In force on 01 January 2024

New ships :

  • with building contracts dated on or after 01 Jan 2024; or
  • with keel laying on or after 01 Jul 2024
  • delivered on or after 01 Jan 2027.


shall have their towing and mooring equipment designed in accordance with the requirements in MSC.1/Circ. 1175/Rev.1 – REVISED GUIDANCE ON SHIPBOARD TOWING AND MOORING EQUIPMENT.

New ships of 3,000 GT and above shall have their towing and mooring equipment designed in accordance with the requirements of MSC.1/Circ. 1619 – GUIDELINES ON THE DESIGN OF MOORING ARRANGEMENTS AND THE SELECTION OF APPROPRIATE MOORING EQUIPMENT AND FITTINGS FOR SAFE MOORING.

New ships of less than 3,000 GT should comply with the requirement above as far as practicable, or with applicable standards of the Administration.

Ship constructed on or after 01 Jan 2007

Ships constructed on or after 01 Jan 2007 shall be provided with arrangements, equipment, and fittings of sufficient safe working load to enable the safe conduct of all towing and mooring operations.

Each fitting or item of equipment shall be clearly marked with any limitations associated with its safe operation.

For all ships:

Mooring equipment, including lines, shall be inspected and maintained in a suitable condition for their intended purposes as from 01 Jan 2024, taking into consideration Guidelines in MSC.1/Circ. 1620 – GUIDELINES FOR INSPECTION AND MAINTENANCE OF MOORING EQUIPMENT INCLUDING LINES.

Practically the following should be available on board a ship:

  • procedures for mooring operations;
  • procedures for inspection and maintenance of mooring equipment;
  • manufacturers’ criteria for replacement of mooring lines;
  • records of the original design concept, equipment, arrangement, and specifications;
  • records of inspection and maintenance of mooring equipment, and inspection and replacement of mooring lines.


Amendments to International Code of Safety for Ships using Gases or other Low-Flashpoint Fuels (IGF Code) – Fire Safety

MSC. 475(102) – In force on 01 January 2024

For ships constructed on or after 01 January 2024

A new Regulation 11.8 of Part A-1 for ships constructed on or after 01 Jan 2024 is added, that fuel preparation rooms containing pumps, compressors, or other potential ignition sources shall be provided with a fixed fire-extinguishing system complying with the provisions of SOLAS Regulation II-2/

Regulation II-1/25-1 – Water Level | Detectors on Multiple Hold Cargo Ships other than Bulk Carriers and Tankers

MSC.482(103)- In force on 01 January 2024

For ships other than bulk carriers and tankers constructed on or after 01 Jan 2024

Multiple hold cargo ships other than bulk carriers and tankers constructed on or after 01 Jan 2024 shall be fitted with water level detectors in each cargo hold intended for dry cargoes. Those water level detectors shall:

  • give audible and visual alarms at the navigation bridge, one when the water level above the bottom of the cargo hold reaches a height of not less than 0.3 m, and another at a height not less than 15% of the depth of the cargo hold but not more than 2 m; and
  • be fitted at the aft end of the cargo holds. For cargo holds which are occasionally used for water ballast, an alarm overriding device may be installed.


Chapter IV – Radiocommunications

MSC.496(105)- In force on 01 January 2024

SOLAS Chapter IV on GMDSS requirements is significantly revised, especially as regards the sea area A3 and COMSAR.1/Circ.32/Rev.2 (3 Jul 2023) provides additional details, as follows:

  • References to INMARSAT coverage have been replaced with the term “Recognized Mobile Satellite Service” (RMSS).
  • Although the definition of sea areas A1, A2 and A4 remain unchanged, the definition of “Sea Area A3” has changed. Sea Area A3 now means ‘an area, excluding sea areas A1 and A2, within the coverage of a recognised mobile
    satellite service (RMSS) supported by the ship earth station (SES) carried on board, in which continuous alerting is available’.
  • In addition to maritime mobile satellite services provided by INMARSAT, the IMO has recognized the maritime mobile satellite services of IRIDIUM SATELLITE LLC.
  • For a ship certified to operate in sea area A3, the Cargo Ship Safety Radio Certificate is to indicate the recognized mobile satellite service (INMARSAT / IRIDIUM).
  • Transmitting and receiving distress and safety communications using direct-printing telegraphy (NBDP) is no longer a part of GMDSS requirements and hence need not be fitted on board (redundant).
  • Requirements for Radar SART / AIS-SART and two two-way VHF radiotelephone apparatus have been moved from SOLAS Ch-III, (Life Saving Appliances and Arrangements) to SOLAS Ch-IV Reg. 7.2 and 7.3.
  • Sea area A1 requires a satellite EPIRB; VHF-EPIRB can no longer be accepted.
  • The relevant amended Safety Radio Certificate Form and Record of Equipment (Form R) are included in the amendments.


Performance Standards of Radiocommunications Equipment

MSC.508, 510, 511, 512, 513, 515, 516, 517(105) – In force on 01 January 2024

Performance standards of new radiocommunications equipment installed on or after 01 Jan 2024 should be in accordance with the above MSC Resolutions, whilst those standards of existing equipment shall continue to be in accordance with MSC Resolutions previously in force. Type approval certificates of equipment indicate the relevant performance standards.

Nevertheless, on 30 Jun 2023, IMO issued MSC.1/Circ.1676 about Delays affecting the Availability of New GMDSS Equipment. In particular, and in accordance with MSC.511(105), MSC.512(105), and MSC.513(105) the performance standards for new equipment of VHF, MF-HF, and INM-C respectively have been adopted for new installations on or after 1 Jan 2024. Considering that it would be unrealistic for new equipment to comply with new
performance standards by 01 Jan 2024, the Committee invited Member States to consider continuation of new installations until 01 Jan 2028 with the existing performance standards i.e. in accordance with Res. A.803(19), A.806(19), and A.807(19) for new equipment of VHF, MF-HF, and INM-C respectively. Flag Administration consent is required in this respect.

Amendments to IMSBC Code

MSC.500(105)-In force on 01 December 2023

  • Ammonium Nitrate Based Fertilizer (Non-hazardous) has been cancelled from Group C and two new categories of AMMONIUM NITRATE BASED FERTILIZER have been introduced in Groups B and C.
  • A few other cargoes are being introduced for the first time or moved from one group to another.
  • Vessels already certified for IMSBC Code Group B will not be affected by Code revisions.
  • IMSBC Code fitness certificate must be re-issued on or after 1 Dec 2023 at the owners/managers request.
  • The list of cargoes for Exemption certificates (for Fixed Fire Extinguishing Arrangements in cargo spaces) relating to safety equipment certificates and which are issued in accordance with MSC/Circ.1395 will be revised from Rev. 4 to 5 on or after 01 Dec 2023.


Amendments to IMDG Code

MSC.501(105)- In force on 01 January 2024

Amendments to the IMDG Code have been introduced concerning:

  • Safety and security precautions;
  • Classification of cargoes;
  • List of cargoes and special provisions;
  • Packing and tank provisions;
  • Consignment procedures;
  • Construction and testing of packaging;
  • Transport operations


Nevertheless, SOLAS requirements (Chapter II-2, Reg. 19) remain the same, therefore vessel compliance will not be affected.

New Chapter XV – Safety Measures for Ships Carrying Industrial Personnel & International Code of Safety for Ships Carrying Industrial Personnel (IP CODE)

MSC.521(106) & MSC.527(106) in force on 01 January 2024

  • Applies to cargo ships and high-speed cargo craft, of 500 GT or more, constructed on or after 01 Jul 2024 which carry more than 12 industrial personnel.
  • Industrial personnel (IP) means all persons transported or accommodated on board for the purpose of offshore industrial activities performed on board other ships and/or offshore facilities.
  • Cargo ships and high-speed cargo craft constructed before 01 Jul 2024 shall partly comply with the IP Code by the first intermediate or renewal survey (for cargo ships) or the third annual or renewal survey (for high-speed cargo craft) whichever occurs first, after 01 Jul 2024.
  • The IP Code incorporates requirements for hull construction, machinery and electrical installations, fire safety, and life saving.


Amendments to ESP Code

MSC.525(106) In force on 01T July 2024

International Code on the Enhanced Programme of Inspections During the Surveys of Bulk Carriers and Tankers

  • Examination of double-side skin void spaces of bulk carriers exceeding 20 years of age and 150 m in length or more is added in annual surveys.
  • For ballast tanks of single-side skin or double-side skin bulk carriers, excluding double-bottom tanks, where a hard protective coating is found to be in less than GOOD condition, and is not renewed, the said tanks shall be examined at annual intervals. Thickness measurements shall be carried out as deemed necessary by the surveyor.


Key amendments to MARPOL

IMO Resolution In force on
MEPC.361(79) 01 May 2024
MEPC.362(79) 01 May 2024
MEPC.375(80) Effective

Amendments to MARPOL Annex VI – Information to be included in the Bunker Delivery Note (BDN)

MEPC.362(79) In force on 01 May 2024

Information concerning the flashpoint ( °C) of the fuel to be delivered, or a statement that the flashpoint has been measured at or above 70°C is to be included in the BDN (regulation 18.5)

Amendments to the 2021 Guidelines on the Shaft / Engine Power Limitation System to comply with the EEXI Requirements and use of a Power Reserve.


Use of a power reserve.

A new format has been introduced as an appendix, for reporting (by flag Administrations to IMO) of EPL / ShaPoLi override activation, use of a power reserve, and reactivation of EPL / ShaPoLi.

2023 IMO Strategy on Reduction of GHG Emissions from Ships


Key Levels of Ambition directing 2023 IMO GHG Strategy:

  • to reduce CO2 emissions per transport work from international shipping, by at least 40% by 2030, compared to 2008;
  • uptake of zero or near-zero GHG emission technologies, fuels, and/or energy sources to represent at least 5%, striving for 10%, of the energy used by international shipping by 2030;
  • to reach net-zero GHG emissions by or around 2050.


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Copyright © 2024, Dromon Bureau of Shipping

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