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    What is International Safety Management?

    The party entrusted with the establishment and implementation of the safety management system by a shipowner is called the safety management agency, taking responsibility for the internal inspection of ships managed on behalf of the shipowner, application for certification examination, and other duties concerning the safety of ships.

    ISM Code image

    Regulations:

    Article 46(3) of the Maritime Safety Act.

    Registration Requirements:

    A safety management system for business under Article 51(2) of the Maritime Safety Act shall be established.

    Required Documents:

    Under Article 47(1) of the Enforcement Decree of the Maritime Safety Act, an application for registration and the following documents shall be submitted to the Oceans and Fisheries Administration;

    • Articles of incorporation (for corporations only) and a copy of the corporate register;
    • Business plan;
    • Copy of safety management compliance certification;
    • Contract between a safety management agency and a client.

    Due Date:

    The legal processing date is 30 days, which includes a security check of representatives.

    What is Certifying Evaluation?

    According to Article 46 of the Maritime Safety Act, shipowners must establish and implement a safety management system for the safe operation of their ships. The certifying evaluation verifies whether it complies with Article 47(1) of the Maritime Safety Act.

    Applicable Subjects:

    • Maritime passenger transportation under Article 3 of the Marine Transportation Act (excluding regular passenger transport and non-regular passenger transport services);
    • Ships engaged in maritime freight transportation under Article 23 of the Marine Transportation Act with a total tonnage of 500 tons or more, ships prescribed by Presidential Decree, and barges (excluding barges that are combined closely with steamers) according to Article 1-2-1-3 of the Ships Act shall be excluded;
    • Carrier vessels and mobile offshore structures engaged in international navigation with a total tonnage of over 500 tons.

    Types of Certifying Evaluation

    Classification by Assessment Authority:

    • Internal evaluation: An examination conducted by shipowners of their business venues and ships;
    • External evaluation: An examination conducted by the Office of Oceans and Fisheries or an agency for certifying evaluation (Korean Register).

    Evaluation Subjects:

    • List of documents related to safety management systems;
    • Evaluation of venues: Examination to verify the safety management system implemented for the safe operation of business;
    • Evaluation of ships: Examination to verify the safety management system implemented for the safe operation of ships.

    Evaluation Schedule:

    • Occasional evaluation: Newly established business venues or additional ships should be evaluated when a change prescribed by the Ordinance of the Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries occurs in the safety management system;
    • Initial evaluation: An evaluation conducted for the first time to examine matters concerning the establishment and implementation of the safety management system;
    • Interim evaluation: An evaluation conducted between the initial and the renewal certifying evaluations, or between renewal certifying evaluations, at a time prescribed by the Ordinance of the Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries;
    • Renewal evaluation: An evaluation conducted at the end of the validity period of a ship's safety certification or safety management certificate;

    Classification of a Ship's Transportation Business Section:

    • Evaluation of coastal vessels: Conducted by the Office of Oceans and Fisheries for transportation ships in domestic ports;
    • Evaluation of ocean-going vessels: Conducted by the Korean Register on behalf of the Korean government for ships whose transportation area is a foreign port.

    Issuance of Certificates

    ‘Interim safety management certificates’ or ‘safety management certificates’ are issued to business holders that pass the evaluations, and ‘interim vessel safety management certificates’ or ‘vessel safety management certificates’ are issued to ships (Related Regulations: Article 49 of the Maritime Safety Act).

    Documents Required

    Applications for the evaluation of ocean-going vessels or their businesses shall be made to the Korean Register, and applications for the evaluation of coastal vessels or their businesses shall be made to the Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries. The following documents must be submitted:

    When applying for an interim certification examination:

    • When a new business venue is established, documents related to the safety management system;
    • When a business venue manages a new type of ship, documents related to the safety management system reflecting the newly managed ship;
    • Upon the addition of a new type of ship, a copy of the interim safety management certificate reflecting the new ship;
    • When the same type of ship is introduced, a copy of the existing safety management certificate.

    When applying for an initial certification examination:

    • Documents related to safety management systems;
    • A status of business outline, organization, and holding ships (for business venues only);
    • Major specifications of organizations and ships concerning onboard operation (for ships only).

    Deadline

    The legal deadline is 14 days.

    Period of Validity

    The period of validity of a vessel safety management certificate and a document of compliance issued shall be five years respectively, while the period of validity of an interim document of compliance shall be one year, and the period of validity of an interim safety management certificate shall be six months. The period of validity of a safety management certificate issued may be extended only once by not more than five months, while an interim safety management certificate may be extended only once by not more than six months.

    Regulations Regarding the Establishment and Implementation of ISM and Safety Management Systems

    • SOLAS Chapter 9, IMOA.741 (18)
    • Articles 47, 48, and 49 of the Maritime Safety Act
    
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