Cargo vessels of less than 500 GT when flying the Belgian flag, shall comply with the rules set out by the Belgian maritime inspectorate (BMI) under the authority of the Royal decree of July 20th 1973 (as amended).
The vessels as mentioned above, except non-propelled pontoons and fishing vessels, shall comply with recommendation number 99 issued by the international association of classification societies (IACS 99). These “Recommendations for the safety of cargo vessels of less than convention size” are supplemented (or replaced where mentioned explicitly) by the Belgian specific requirements and interpretations set out in the document ' IACS 99 – Belgian specific requirements and interpretations'.
The table of contents of both documents is identical up to chapter 9 where additional mandatory Belgian requirements are listed.
As from April 1st 2020 the requirements of 'IACS 99 and the Belgian specific requirements and interpretations' shall be mandatory for all vessels as mentioned above which sail under the flag of the Kingdom of Belgium. During the surveys as from April 1st 2019 it will already be checked if the vessels are in compliance with IACS 99 and 'IACS 99 – Belgian specific requirements and interpretations'.
All vessels of less than 500 GT which are newbuilding projects shall comply with the new requirements as from April 1st 2019.
All existing vessels of less than 500 GT which are to be registered under the Belgian flag shall comply as from date of registration.
In case a survey is performed by a recognised organisation on behalf of the Belgian maritime inspectorate, the survey is to be performed according to the rules of the 'IACS 99 and the Belgian specific requirements and interpretations'. The survey statement and/or report shall reflect this scope clearly.
Any request for exemptions is to be directed to BMI. The decision to grant an exemption will be made on a case-by-case basis and will be documented in an official attestation. A reference to this attestation will be made on the certificate of seaworthiness.
Federal Public Service Mobility and Transport
Belgian maritime inspectorate (BMI)
Natiënkaai 5, 8400 Oostende
Tel: +32 (0)2 277 42 50