VII International forum
“Marine Industry of Russia”
Hotel complex
Department of affairs of the President of the Russian Federation

Moscow, 24, B.Yakimanka Str
24-25 May 2017
Forum bulletin

More on professional associations

Marine industry is one of the most sophisticated and branched industries of the national economy. It comprises design, production, maintenance, operation of vessels, marine platforms and so on; construction and operation of ports, various hydraulic structures; as well as navigation, etc. It is not surprising that there are many associations and unions in this industry.

Associations of Sea Ports

One of the well-known alliances is the Russian Commercial Port Association (RCPA). It was organized in 1988 on the initiative of the superintendents of the largest ports of the USSR. By now, RCPA joins not only large ports but also design, construction and assembly organizations, research institutes, higher education institutions, equipment manufacturers, banking, insurance and commercial structures, shipping companies and so on – over–50 members in total.

And in 1995, the Association joined the Association of Ports and Ship-Owners of the River Transport (APSORT). Among other members of this organization are European River-Sea-Transport Union (ERSTU), Association of Shipping Companies (ASC), Freight Forwarders Association of the Russian Federation (FFARF) and over 80 enterprises related to inland water transport of Russia. In addition to protection of legal and economic interests of its participants, APSORT focuses on solution of research-and-technology and operational issues as well as collaboration with state agencies in the area of inland shipping. In the summer of 2008, APSORT and the Federal Marine and River Transport Agency entered into the Agreement on Cooperation on the Issues of Development and Stable Functioning of the Inland Water Transport specifying all directions of the collaboration. On the same occasion, APSORT was imposed responsibility for administration and conducting of the secretariat of Inland Water Transport technical committee (TC).

Associations of Ship-Owners and Shipping Companies

Russian ship-owners joined in the Union of Russian Ship-Owners (URS) being in fact the successor of the Association for Assistance to Russian Merchant Navigation founded in 1873, and the Association of the Soviet Ship-Owners. The Union started was organized in 1994. Its members are shipbuilding and ship-repair enterprises, banks, insurance companies, shipping companies, and so on – about 80 organizations totally. It contributes to development of the marine navigation in Russia, coordinates its participants’ activities, protects their economic and legal interests, assists in solution of operation and maintenance problems. URS is carries on rigorous activity in the field of design, presentation and support of bills for improvement of legal environment which regulates international and inland navigation, consolidates positions of Russia on the international market, protects Russian ship-owners freighters, and implements national projects, and so on.

Similar tasks (but in a greater degree focused on the market of the inland navigation) are set by created in 2004 Association of Shipping Companies. Its founders are the largest inland navigation companies of the country with about 80% in river transportation of petroleum and its products and about 42% in dry cargoes. ASC represents interests of its members in the European River-Sea-Transport Union (ERSTU) and the International Navigation Association (INA). Thanks to the participation of ASC ship pilotage in the Sea of Azov was declared optional, inland navigation was excluded from “special water use”, and passing and moorage in water areas as well as process-need water withdrawal were exempted from water taxation.

Unions of Shipbuilders and Ship-Repair Organizations

Shipbuilding and ship-repair organizations join in regional shipbuilder associations (Shipbuilder Association of the Astrakhan Region, Shipbuilder Association of the Arkhangelsk Region, Shipbuilder Association of Saint-Petersburg and the Leningrad Region, and so on), Shipbuilder Association of the Russian Federation, Association of Ship-Repair Plants of the Russian Federation.

Associations of Narrow-Specialization

Enterprises arranging freightage join into the Association of Russian Freight Forwarders (ARFF). It is reasonable, since transportation (especially, international) require all participants to be highly coordinated. Such participants are marine, inland, air, railroad and automobile carriers. In addition to protection of rights of the members on the domestic and international markets of forwarding services, the goal of the Association consists in prevention of unfair competition between them. ARFF represents its participants in the International Federation of Freight Forwarders Associations (FIATA) and performs certification of enterprises.

Business partnership with a reliable marine agent is vital for any ship-owner, freight forwarder and freighter. On the initiative of and under the auspices of Sovfrakht, OJSC, the Association of Marine Agents of Russia was organized in 1995. The Association promotes establishment of business relations between agents and ship-owners both in Russia and abroad, provides consulting and other help to its participants, encourages interchange of experience, and so on. The Association joins over 20 organizations approving themselves as reliable and faithful marine agencies.

Due to use of marine resources and water ways, close international cooperation and clear legal control in this field become vital. In 1968, Association of the International Maritime Law was created by the Decree of the Government of the USSR, and already in 1969 it allotted the International Maritime Committee. The activities of the Association are focused on survey of applied and theoretical issues of maritime law related to navigation, exploration of mineral and biological maritime resources, protection of marine environment, carrying out researches of the World Ocean. Moreover, the list of tasks of the Association comprises facilitation of safeguarding in the sea, drafting statutory acts, and other activities. The Association joins not only employees of the sea and river fleet, but officers of ministries, agencies and organizations related with navigation.

The Association of Sea and River Fuelers was organized in 2005 and in 2006, it was renamed as The Russian Association Sea and River Fuelers. The main tasks of the Association are consolidation of participants of this market sector, provision fair competition, protection of interests of its members (including settlement of questions on non-payment for delivered fuel and delivery of defective products). The activity of the Association is focused on improvement of operation in the field of oil transportation by water transport, prevention of hazardous conditions related to their leakage, and so on. Today, over 20 organizations participate in the Russian Association Sea and River Fuelers.

Efficient work in the field of navigation is impossible without qualified staff. There are several organization joining various specialists: Association of Sea Pilots of Russia, Association of Shipmasters, Association of Communications Men of Marine and Inland Transport (ACMMIT).

The Association of Signal Officers of Marine and Inland Transport (ASOMIT) was registered under its current name in 2007, while it was founded in 1996. Its goals and tasks are provision of compliance of pilots’ working conditions to the norms stipulated by legislative acts of the Russian Federation, representation of interests of its members in regulatory and governmental bodies, assistance in implementation of new communication technologies on ships of all fleets. ASOMIT counts with about 20 members.

The Association of Sea Pilots of Russia was organized in 1995, and in 1999, it was given a status of international non-governmental organization. It joins autonomous non-commercial organizations which in return associate pilots.

Shipmasters are associated in the Far-Eastern Association of Shipmasters (FEAS) being a member of the International Federation of Shipmasters’ Associations (IFSA), and Kaliningrad regional non-governmental organization – the Association of Shipmasters. FEAS not only protects economic interests of its members, but also acts as a recognized expert of water way accident investigation by order of the Investigative Committee under the Prosecutor’s Office of the Russian Federation, and takes an active part in the work of IFSA.

In 1997, the Association of Companies on Recruitment, Training, Employment, and Job Placement of Seamen was organized. In the summer of 2008, it was included in the Working Group on Implementation of the Decree of the Government of the Russian Federation #1009 dated 24/12/2008 On Delegating the Health and Human Services Agency with Powers of the Competent Authority Provided by ILO Convention # 179 on Recruiting and Job Placement of Seamen. The Association of Companies on Recruitment, Training, Employment, and Job Placement of Seamen comprises about twenty Russian companies.

In the summer of 2009, mass media informed on creation another union – the Russian Association of Marine Underwriters. According to the representatives of various continuing insurance companies, activities of the Association will encourage further development of the market of marine underwriters of Russia.

Other Associations and Unions

In June, 2001, Non-commercial Partnership for Coordination of Operation of the Northern Sea Route was created. Participants of the Association of Offshore Geological Survey Organizations ArcticShelf formed in 2003 perform tasks on coordination of development of the Russian Arctic shelf, improvement of the effectiveness of exploration, and collaboration.

Here, we list by no means all professional associations and unions of the marine industry. Each union solves its tasks while strengthening and developing the industry in its entirety.


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By: “Ideological buiseness-projects”

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