Proposed regulatory changes to improve the survey and inspection practices of bulk vessels for fitness to load grain

30 Aug 2021 1:38 PM | Stacey Taylor - General Manager (Administrator)

Australia's export legislation is changing and we want to hear from you....


The Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment (the department), is proposing regulatory changes to improve export bulk vessel survey and inspection practices.  The proposed changes will provide greater assurance to the department, the shipping industry, and Australia's grain exporters that bulk vessels comply with agricultural export legislation.

The department has been collaborating on these changes with the Australasian Institute of Marine Surveyors (AIMS) and representatives of Australia's shipping and grain export industries.  AIMS and shipping and grain export industry representatives are being consulted on the proposed changes and now the department and your industry bodies would like to hear from you!

Two key changes that are proposed to come into effect from 1 November 2021 are:

1) Ensuring all bulk vessel inspection authorised officers (BVI AOs) record their BVIs using helmet-mounted video recording devices

It is proposed that BVI AOs or their employers will be responsible for:

  • purchasing required equipment listed on our website 
  • storing recorded video footage for up to 2 years for audit purposes
  • making recorded footage available to the department on request

2) Ensuring all qualified marine surveyors are accredited under the new Accredited Grain Surveyor Assurance (ASGA) scheme to survey and certify bulk vessels.

It is proposed that:

  • AIMS will administer the scheme
  • AIMS members and non-members will be able to apply
  • There will be an annual accreditation fee ($250) and additional application cost ($90) per marine surveyor
  • Accreditation will need to be renewed annually (approximately in September/October)
  • Exporters and shipping companies must source accredited marine surveyors to perform bulk vessel surveys.  BVI AOs will need to confirm a marine surveyor's accreditation.  The AIMS website will provide a publicly available list of accredited marine surveyors and surveyors will be issued identification cards.
  • The qualification requirements will be updated to better reflect the qualifications and experience of existing marine surveyors in Australia that perform bulk vessel surveys for plant exports.

Further information

Please visit our Plant export legislation changes webpage for details on the proposed changes.

Feedback

The department is seeking preliminary feedback on the proposed changes.  You can provide feedback directly to us or by emailing plantexportreform@awe.gov.au.  Preliminary feedback closes at 11:59PM AEST on Sunday,12 September 2021.

Your preliminary feedback will help inform an additional formal public consultation process, which is scheduled for late September 2021.  Stakeholders will be provided with details on this consultation process closer to the date.

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