Proposed anchorage area in the Malacca Straits

As reported in INTERTANKO Weekly NEWS No. 29 of 16 July 2004 INTERTANKO, OCIMF (Oil Companies’ International Marine Forum) and SIGTTO Society of International Gas Tanker and Terminal Operators Ltd.) were advised by the IMO to write directly to the three littoral states (Singapore, Indonesia and Malaysia) and raise their concerns regarding the proposed anchorage in the Singapore Straits. The three associations duly wrote to the littoral states (click here to download the letter) but did not receive a response.

At this session of the IMO’s Maritime Safety Committee (MSC 79) it was reported that in the Singapore Strait there has been an establishment of an anchorage area in the existing separation zone for the emergency anchoring of vessels, including damaged vessels proceeding for repairs prior to entry into a shipyard, or for similar matters. This information was circulated by COLREG.2/Circ.54 of 28 May 2004 and the amendment will be implemented at 0000 hours UTC (Universal Time) on 1 January 2005.

Indonesia had also informed the Committee in May 2004 that the associated new rules and procedures for ships transiting and using the amended Traffic Separation Scheme (TSS) in the Singapore Strait would be submitted to the IMO before 1 December 2004.

On 28 June 2004, the Organization received a copy of the text of a Decree of the Directorate General of the Sea Communications No. PP 72/8/1-03 dated 20 November 2003 on ‘Standard operating procedures for management and operation of the Nipah transit anchorage area in the waters of Nipah’ from the Government of the Republic of Indonesia. This information was circulated to Member Governments by means of SN/Circ.238 of 20 July 2004.

OCIMF and INTERTANKO intervened and advised the MSC that the joint industry concerns had not been addressed, requesting a delay in the implementation date until such time as they have been. Indonesia agreed that bearing in mind the concerns raised, which were currently under discussion at this time in Jakarta, the implementation date would be deferred until 1 July 2005. It was agreed to issue an addendum to COLREG.2/Circ 54 which would be circulated to advise all parties accordingly.

Contact: Howard Snaith