Digital certificates

Great to see some flag states finally entering the 21st century with digital certification for vessels. One less job for a Master to perform by not having to maintain a folder of certificates.

Hopefully we will see the digital implementation of digital certification for seafarers, so there is no need to carry anything more than one credit card sized ID when joining a vessel. This would also help fight fake certification if everything is held on a secure central database.

"The Danish Maritime Authority made world news when it announced on 24 June last year that from then on Danish ships were no longer to set to sea with heaps of paper certificates.

Today the Danish Maritime Authority only issues digital certificates, which are very efficient and save time and money for both shipowners and authorities.

Today the Danish Maritime Authority has concluded a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the maritime authorities in Singapore and Norway. The MoU has been signed on the occasion of the maritime event Singapore Maritime Week and establishes the basis for the three countries’ efforts to spread the use of digital certificates.

Director General Andreas Nordseth from the Danish Maritime Authority:
”It is an important step that Norway, Singapore and Denmark – three major shipping nations – join forces to spread digital certificates. Cooperation makes it easier for us to promote the use of digital certificates and make more countries enter upon the digital course."

In the future how do you think this will affect the PSC inspection and compliance procedures, and flag detention ratios?

It will simplify the whole PSC and vetting process. No need to dig through a heap of old paper certificate in a folder that hasn’t been “weeded” for years. (Speaking from frustrating experience)


PSC can vet a ships certification before it even enters a countries territorial waters, meaning when they board a vessel they can dedicate more time to identifying if there are any grounds for detention.

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