Standard for Empty Bulk Vessel Surveys by Accredited Marine Surveyors

Below is the standard for empty bulk vessel surveys to inform and support accredited marine surveyors undertaking surveys on bulk vessels for exports of prescribed plants and plant products.

Users of this standard should be aware this is a digital standard and a 'live' marine surveyor tool.  Users are recommended to view this standard electronically directly from this website to ensure they are using the latest controlled version.

Conflicts of Interest Guidance Note

AIMS and DAFF understand that marine surveyors have existing relationships with authorised officers appointed in the job function BVI3001: Export inspection of empty bulk vessels (BVI AOs), shippers and shipping agents.

Relationships mean the way you regard or behave towards other people or groups and may influence decisions you make as a marine surveyor. These relationships might lead to conflicts of interest when surveying bulk vessels.

This fact sheet will help you understand what a conflict of interest is under the AGSA Scheme. It will also help you decide what to do if you think you have a conflict of interest.

AGSA Conflict of Interest Guidance Note AUG2023 (Final).pdf

AGSA Scheme Complaints Process

The AIMS is committed to a fair and equitable accreditation scheme and has in place a detailed complaints procedure.

 Any person can submit a complaint to AIMS (complainant) relating to the conduct of an Accredited Marine Surveyor under the AGSA Scheme but complaints should note that:
a.       The complaint must relate to conduct that occurred after the AGSA Scheme commenced on 1 July 2023; and
b.        The complaint is submitted within 12 months of the conduct occurring. 

Complaints are to be submitted using the ‘Grievance and Complaint Report Form’ published by AIMS and available below

Submit the completed form with any required supporting evidence via email to

Important Note:

AIMS will not investigate a complaint relating to the conduct of a DAFF Authorised Officer. Complaints relating to the conduct of a DAFF Authorised Officer are to be submitted to DAFF via email to If AIMS receives a complaint involving a DAFF Authorised Officer, AIMS will provide a copy of the complaint to DAFF for investigation.

Any person who is the subject of a complaint (respondent) will have the opportunity to respond to the complaint.

The ‘Accredited Grain Surveyor Assurance Scheme Complaint Handling and Investigation Fact Sheet and Process’ , is available below or you can request the full policy agreement contained in the ‘Accreditation Scheme Deed’ between DAFF and AIMS by emailing

For ease of reference AIMS has developed a flow chart outlining the complaint handling process which is available below

Note: In line with the principles of privacy, the findings and outcome of the complaints handling and investigation process will not be disclosed to the complainant. The exception is where all persons, including the respondent, provide their prior written consent to that disclosure.

Consequences for Accreditation

If a determination to Suspend Accreditation is made AIMS will provide the respondent a Suspension Notice advising any conditions AIMS considers appropriate and the date that the suspension takes effect and ends.

If a determination to Cancel Accreditation is made AIMS will provide the respondent a Cancellation Notice advising the date that the cancellation takes effect and the respondents accreditation will end and include that they will be prohibited from making a new application. AIMS may also provide a Prohibition Notice specifying dates and conditions deemed appropriate.

Review of Decisions

An affected person may apply for review of the Decision by submitting a ‘Request for Review of Decision Form’, available on the AIMS website.

  • In reviewing this request for review, AIMS may ask for further information
  • The review may alter the decision and in doing so may invite comment from the DAFF
  • Any review determination is final, and no further review may be sought by the affected person.

Documentation for surveyors

AGSA complaint process FACT SHEET.pdf

Complaint flow chart.pdf

Grievance and Complaint Form_V2 24.pdf

About AIMS
The largest industry body in the Australasian region for professional marine surveyors. Established 1986.
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