During the period of February 19 – 23, the fifth session of the Sub-Committee on Navigation, Communications and Search and Rescue of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) was held in London, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
Representatives of the State Enterprise "Marine Search and Rescue Service" (MSRS) of the Ministry of Infrastructure of Ukraine have participated in the mentioned session of the NCSR-5 as members of the Ukrainian delegation, namely Capt. Sergiy Dubin, Acting Deputy Head on Search and Rescue, Mrs Natalia Platzerova, Head of the LRIT National Data Centre and Mr Valeriy Dyakov, Head of the Communications Department. There were also representatives of the Embassy of Ukraine in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, the Shipping Register of Ukraine and the National University "Odessa Maritime Academy" among the Ukrainian delegation.
During the session it was discussed following issues:
- consideration of new proposals and amendments to routeing measures and mandatory ship reporting systems;
- functioning and development of the LRIT system;
- application of the Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS) in the maritime field and development of performance standards for shipborne receiver equipment;
- draft Guidelines for the harmonized display of navigation information received via communications equipment, standardized modes of operation S-mode, development of the guidance on definition and harmonization of the format and structure of Maritime Service Portfolios MSPs;
- updating of the GMDSS master plan and guidelines on MSI (maritime safety information) provision, protection of injured, rescued at sea;
- amendments to SOLAS with regard to necessary equipment connected with the extension of requirements of the Polar Code and development of new performance standards for GNSS compasses;
- revision of SOLAS chapters III and IV for modernization of the Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS), including related and consequential amendments to other existing instruments;
- results of the Radiocommunication ITU-R Study Group and ITU World Radiocommunication Conference;
- report of the twenty-fourth meeting of the ICAO/IMO Joint Working Group on harmonization of aeronautical and maritime search and rescue concerning development of GMDSS satellite services;
- revised performance standards for EPIRDs (beacons) operating on 406 MHz (resolution A.810(19)) to include Cospas-Sarsat MEOSAR and second-generation beacons;
- further development of the Global SAR Plan for maritime search and rescue services;
- harmonization of aeronautical and maritime search and rescue procedures including SAR training matters;
- amendments to the IAMSAR Manual.
It is necessary to mention that Ukraine with the support of the Embassy of Ukraine in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland has submitted during this session three documents:
- document NCSR 5/6/1, a draft Guidelines for integration and presentation of available navigation-related information exchange via communication equipment by integrating VHF/MF/HF DSC into the Information display;
- document NCSR 5/22/7 "Conduct of Search and Rescue Operations in the Maritime Areas Appertaining to the Temporarily Occupied Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the City of Sevastopol, Ukraine" regarding obstacles for conducting of search and rescue operations in the areas appertaining to the temporarily occupied Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol;
- document NCSR 5/Inf.16 "Report on the 14th Black Sea Conference on Maritime Search and Rescue (SAR)" regarding harmonization of maritime search and rescue procedures, including SAR training matters carried out in the Black Sea area, namely summarizes the outcome of the 14th Black Sea Conference on Maritime Search and Rescue, which was held in Odessa, Ukraine, on 20 and 21 September 2017.
Ukrainian delegation has emphasized once again on the necessity of international reaction on obstacles for conducting of search and rescue operations in the maritime areas appertaining the Crimea due to unlawful unilateral acts of the Russian Federation (RF), especially in the context of the Ukrainian side declaration that this part of the Black Sea transforms into "grey zone" for international navigation.
As the outcome, MSRS representatives have discussed with their foreign colleagues new obligatory documents and recommendations of the International Maritime Organization and drafts of amendments to the existing documents in the context of safety of shipping, navigation, radiocommunication, search and rescue.