Maritime Safety

Policy statement by the Deputy Prime Minister on arrangements from 1 July 2018 for the National System for Domestic Commercial Vessel Safety

The Department of Infrastructure, Regional Development and Cities is responsible for administering maritime safety legislation for the Australian Government. Australia’s primary framework for maritime safety is established under the Navigation Act 2012 (Navigation Act) and the Marine Safety Domestic Commercial Vessel) National Law Act 2012 (National Law Act).

The Navigation Act 2012 establishes Australia’s regulatory framework for international ship and seafarer safety, shipping aspects of protecting the marine environment, and the actions of seafarers in Australian waters. The Navigation Act also gives effect to international conventions and treaties developed by the International Maritime Organization, the International Labour Organization and United Nations Conferences to which Australia is a signatory.

The Marine Safety (Domestic Commercial Vessel) National Law Act 2012 commenced on 1 July 2013. The National Law Act establishes the Australian Maritime Safety Authority as the National Marine Safety Regulator for domestic commercial vessels. The National System for Domestic Commercial Vessel Safety is Australia’s single regulatory framework for the certification, construction, equipment, design and operation of domestic commercial vessels inside Australia’s exclusive economic zone. More information about the role of the National Maritime Safety Regulator is available here.