Marine Order 12: Consultation report - Jul to Sep 2023

This report provides an overview of the consultation process, key issues raised during public consultation and the key changes to the Marine Order.

Marine Order 12 (Construction — subdivision and stability, machinery and electrical installations) 2023 (MO12) is a reissue of Marine Order 12 (Construction — subdivision and stability, machinery and electrical installations) 2016. The commencement date of the reissued MO12 is 1 January 2024.

The main changes in draft MO12 that was circulated for public consultation are: 

  • add new requirements to have ship specific towing and mooring arrangements plans and keep them on board for master’s reference 
  • introduce new requirements for regulated Australian vessels (RAV) under 24m length constructed on or after 1 January 2024 for watertight and weathertight integrities to comply with NSCV standards
  • update referencing to provisions under regulation 13 of SOLAS chapter II-1 amended by resolution MSC.474(102) applied to openings in watertight bulkheads 
  • restructure and format to reflect current drafting style and update definitions as appropriate. 

Consultation approach

MO12 gives effect to SOLAS Chapter II-1 that prescribes standards for the structure, subdivision, stability, machinery and electrical installations for regulated Australian vessels, and foreign vessels.

The 102nd session of Maritime Safety Committee of IMO adopted resolution MSC.474(102) that amended SOLAS regulation II-1/3-8 introducing new requirements for vessels 3000 gross tonnage and above to have mooring arrangements designed and the mooring equipment including lines selected in accordance with Guidelines on the design of mooring arrangements and the selection of appropriate mooring equipment and fittings for safe mooring (MSC.1/Circ.1619).

These Guidelines also require vessels to have ship-specific towing and mooring arrangements plan that should include specific information regarding the towing and mooring fittings aboard the vessel, the mooring lines, as well as the arrangement of mooring lines and the acceptable environmental conditions for mooring. This is in accordance with section 5 of the annex to the Revised guidance on shipboard towing and mooring equipment (MSC.1/Circ.1175/Rev.1).

Amendments to SOLAS regulation II-1/3-8 will come into force on 1 January 2024. New requirements will mostly affect the shipowners and to some extent the classification societies in regard to implementation of the new requirements. Although the consultation covered the whole industry as a hole, it was ensured that shipowners and their peak body were included in the consultation.

Public Consultation 


The public consultation on the proposed draft MO12 took place from 31 July 2023 to 10 September 2023 for a period of 6 weeks. A copy of the draft MO12 was placed on the AMSA website and social media including Facebook and Instagram for public comments. Notification of the public consultation was also emailed to around 165 stakeholders including shipowners, ship operating companies, training organisations, port authorities, seafarer representative organisations, classification societies, shipping industry peak bodies and interested government departments and agencies inviting them to comment.

AMSA received only one submission during the public consultation period that relates to drafting approach on “as in force from time to time” for which there was no need to take any action.

Key issues arising from feedback and AMSA’s response

During the process of reviewing the feedback from industry, AMSA identified no major issues and only one minor issue commenting on a particular drafting style as outlined below.

Summary of submissions

Activity Recieved Confidential Public
Public consultation 1 1 0

Key issue 1

While the words “as amended from time to time” in the current MO12 is right, suggested "as in force at time a vessel is constructed" will be more appropriate than “as in force from time to time” as used in the draft MO12 while incorporating IACS UI SC 156 in relation to compliance of doors in watertight bulkheads of cargo ships and passenger ships.


The Australian Senate standing committee for the scrutiny of delegated legislation publishes guidelines for the incorporation of documents in relation to legislative instruments that incorporate, by reference, Acts, legislative instruments or other external documents, without reproducing the relevant text of the incorporated material in the instrument. As Marine Order 12 is a legislative instrument, AMSA is required to follow these guidelines so far as is reasonable and practicable.

The guidelines recommend using the phrase ‘as in force from time to time’ to allow any future amendment to or version of IACS UI SC 156 to be automatically incorporated in MO12. Effectively this means the same as ‘as amended from time to time’ in the current 2016 issue of MO12.

Further information

AMSA has provided all necessary reference materials to support the implementation of the reissued MO12. 

If you require further information, please contact us.

Last updated: 

Friday 24 November 2023