The international regulatory environment surrounding shipping is becoming ever more complex. Compliance is a key requirement for both importers and exporters and will come into ever-greater focus as global markets continue to expand.
A current knowledge of the necessary guidelines and legislation is essential, as changes and updates are frequent. For example, the IMDG (International Maritime Dangerous Goods) Code, which provides guidelines
for the shipment of hazardous goods by sea, is updated every two years. The latest, 2014 Edition was voluntary on 1 January 2015 but became mandatory on 1 January 2016.
One of the most major recent developments in transport safety has been the introduction of more rigorous guidelines for the safe selection and usage of CTU’s,
the Guidelines for Packing Cargo Transport Units (CTU Guide) 1997 being replaced by the new Code of Practice for Packing of Cargo Transport Units (CTU Code). This establishes a clear chain of responsibility within any shipping event, with obligations placed
on all the participants within the supply chain. The Code is expected to improve accountability standards within the industry and carry far more weight than the previous Guide, quickly becoming an industry standard.
With such a rapidly evolving range of legislation,
it is essential that businesses and 3PL suppliers work with partners who are themselves accountable and knowledgeable about the requirements and responsibilities in the supply chain.