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Use of Electronic Certificates onboard (MMC – 355)

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The purpose of this Merchant Marine Circular is to inform that the Republic of Panama has welcomed the use of the Guidelines for the use of electronic certificates, adopted by the International Maritime Organization by the Facilitation Committee for the use of electronic certificates through the FAL.5/Circ.39/Rev.2 of April 20, 2016, in order to facilitate the use and acceptance of electronic certificates on board.

Furthermore, to inform the stakeholder on the List of Certificates that has been already issued by this Administration as Electronic Certificates, as well as to inform the list of Recognized Organizations authorized on the issuance of Electronic Certificates a per the delegation of authority approved by the Republic of Panama.

Considering that signed paper certificates issued by our Administration and Recognized Organizations authorized to act on our behalf have been the traditional means of documenting compliance with International Maritime Organization requirements, as well as ships have experienced instances of Port State Control actions because a traditional paper certificate has been issued but has not arrived
on the ship, or the traditional paper certificate has been damaged or lost.

The use and acceptance of electronic statutory certificates, including printed versions of electronic certificates is an initiative well supported by the Panama Maritime Authority, in order to reduce the instances of Port State Control authorities denying the validity of these certificates, resulting in a burden to the master and crew, ship owner or operator, Port State Control authorities, Administration, and other stakeholders.

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