IMO’s new rule on information exchange


  • A new global rule mandated by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) for national governments to introduce electronic information exchange between ships and ports took effect from 8 April 2019.
  • The rule seeks to make cross-border trade simpler.
  • The rule is mandatory under IMO’s Convention on Facilitation of International Maritime Traffic (FAL Convention).



  • The Facilitation of International Maritime Traffic (FAL Convention) was adopted in 1965.
  • The main objective of the convention is to achieve the most efficient maritime transport as possible, looking for smooth transit in ports of ships, cargo, and passengers.
  • The Facilitation Convention encourages the use of a “single window” for data, to enable all the information required by public authorities in connection with the arrival, stay and departure of ships, persons and cargo, to be submitted via a single portal, without duplication.
  • Under the requirement for electronic data exchange, all national authorities should now have provision for electronic exchange of this information.
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