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MAR’s Update on Logbooks

The International Shipping Register of Madeira (MAR) has published Circular 04/MAR updating the interpretation of national requirements related to logbooks on MAR registered vessels.

Objective

This circular is intended to advise shipowners, companies and Recognised Organisations (RO), when acting on behalf of the Portuguese administration, of the updated interpretation of national requirements in relation to the logbooks used on board MAR registered ships.

The national requirements

Relevant national legislation requires ships to carry logbooks in accordance with national and international legislation, which shall be authenticated by the relevant national authorities (MAR or DGRM) or a RO on their behalf.

In addition, it also establishes templates for those logbooks.

Although MAR registered ships are subject to a specific regime in several matters, in the case of the provisions related with the logbooks templates there is no reference to exclusions from its applicability to those ships.

Therefore, the understanding and practice has been to fully apply those requirements to MAR registered vessels as well and, consequently, MAR has been supplying vessels with complying books.

The updated interpretation

The Ministry of the Sea has now endorsed an interpretation of the legal provision in question where its application to MAR registered ships does not necessarily include the mandatory use of the logbooks national templates.

Consequence

Following this interpretation, MAR registered ships are no longer required to use logbooks as per the national templates. Obviously, other relevant national and international requirements will continue to be applicable.

In any case, MAR will supply logbooks prepared in accordance with the national templates to companies that choose to continue to use them on board their ships.

Authentication and retention

The national legislation also includes requirements for the authentication and retention of the ships’ logbooks.

The authentication can be done during surveys by the RO, (the cooperation of ROs is kindly requested), by endorsing the masters’ opening and closing statements of the logbooks on board.

The retention of the logbooks on board is two years after the date of the last entry, but subject to international requirements when they impose longer periods of records retention.

Electronic logbooks

The Portuguese administration is also addressing the matter of the use of logbooks in electronic format on board ships in order to adapt the relevant legal and technical framework.

When the national framework changes in that respect, MAR will advise accordingly.

Additional information

If any additional information is required on the subject matter of this circular please do not hesitate to contact us.

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