Bring Class into the 21st Century

08 Jul 2011
ClassNK chairman and president Noboru Ueda (centre) welcomes Jan Jankowski of PRS (left) and Zlatko Zulim of CRS (right) to the IACS Council.

ClassNK chairman and president Noboru Ueda (centre) welcomes Jan Jankowski of PRS (left) and Zlatko Zulim of CRS (right) to the IACS Council

Retiring IACS chairman Noboru Ueda of ClassNK says the association must play an expanded role in the future, to better meet the changing needs of the industry, and bring classification into the 21st century.

The remarks were made at the conclusion of the 63rd council meeting of the International Association of Classification Societies, which was held in Kyoto, Japan. With his term as Chairman of the IACS Council ending on July 1st, Ueda, who is also chairman and president of ClassNK, oversaw a year that brought a number of changes, including the addition of the Polish Register of Shipping (PRS) and the Croatian Register of Shipping (CRS) to IACS. Apart from the Indian Register of Shipping, which switched from associate membership to full membership in 2010, the two European class societies are the first new full members to join IACS.

Upon assuming his role as Chairman, Ueda set out three policy goals for his one-year term of office, which are outlined by ClassNK as follows::

  1. Making proactive technical contributions to the maritime industry and the IMO
    In order to help the industry address the technical and safety challenges raised by GHG emission reduction, IACS submitted draft proposals for establishing a minimum speed requirement for vessels, as well as established a joint working group with shipowners’ and shipbuilders’ associations from around the globe, which began developing new guidelines for ensuring smooth implementation of the IMO’s EEDI scheme.
    Moreover, in order to ensure compliance with the Goal Based Standards (GBS) by the IMO’s deadlines, IACS made great progress in the development of the new GBS compliant harmonized Common Structural Rules, which it is on schedule to present to the IMO before the end of 2013. IACS also made progress on the development of other rules and regulations related to GBS implementation.
  2. Better reflecting the needs of the entire maritime industry
    In order to better reflect the needs and opinions of the entire global maritime industry, Ueda met with leaders from throughout the world maritime community, as well as called for greater input from Asian shipbuilder’s organizations in the international rule making process. Further, based on a proposal made by Chairman Ueda, the IACS Council agreed to invite the Asian Shipbuilding Experts’ Forum to regularly participate in IACS winter Council meetings alongside the many shipowners’ organisations which already take part in the meetings.
  3. Completing IACS’ transition to a more transparent structure
    As part of an ongoing effort to ensure even greater rationality and transparency in its operations while maintaining the highest quality standards, this year IACS successfully completed the implementation of a new wholly independent, external auditing regime. IACS also successfully implemented new more rational and transparent membership requirements, and after a comprehensive quality review, welcomed CRS and PRS as the first new full members to join the IACS Council

Although his term as Chairman of the IACS Council came to a close on 1 July, Ueda says he will continue to serve as vice-chairman of the expanded organisation for the coming year. As vice-chairman he promised that he would “continue my work to make IACS a stronger and more robust organisation, and provide even better service to the maritime industry in the future.”

“While IACS has faced many real challenges over these past years, we have also made incredible achievements. In addition to accomplishing my own personal goals as Chairman, we have made great strides as an association over this past year. With our transition to a larger, more robust, and more transparent organization now complete, I am confident that IACS can make an even greater contribution to the growth and progress of the entire maritime industry,” said Ueda.

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