Arrivals

AMSA conducted PSC inspections at 53 out of the 74 ports visited by foreign ships across Australia in 2021. As shown in the table below, arrivals were not distributed evenly across the ports visited, with 42 per cent of all arrivals occurring at the top five ports.

Ship arrivals in Australian ports for 2021

Total of 26,400 ship arrivals at Australian ports during 2021. Arrivals – top five ports
1. Port Hedland 3,238 (12.3%)
2. Newcastle 2,358 (8.9%)
3. Brisbane 2,207 (8.4%)
4. Gladstone 1,915 (7.3%)
5. Melbourne 1,790 (6.8%)

Port Hedland remained the busiest port for foreign-flagged ship arrivals, predominantly for the export of iron ore. In Newcastle and Gladstone, most arrivals were for the dry bulk export of coal. In Brisbane and Melbourne, most arrivals were engaged in the container trade.

Figure 1 – 2021 Port arrivals by ship type

Figure 1 – 2021 Port arrivals by ship type

Table 2 – Ship arrivals by ship type in 2021 compared to 2020

Ship type 2020 2022 Change
Bulk carrier 14,355 14,814 3.2%
Chemical tanker 1,555 1,370 -11.9%
Container ship 3,698 3,675 -0.6%
Gas carrier 1,474 1,406 -4.6%
General cargo/ multi-purpose 927 1,038 12.0%
Livestock carrier 351 281 -19.9%
Oil tanker 757 733 -3.2%
Vehicle carrier 1,274 1,524 19.6%
Other 1,847 1,559 -15.6%
Total arrivals 26,179 26,400 8.4%

Inspections by ship type

In 2021, AMSA inspectors carried out 2,820 initial PSC inspections and 1,455 follow up inspections. AMSA inspectors are now able to conduct remote follow up inspections in accordance with Tokyo Memorandum of Understanding guidelines, 35 of the follow up inspections in 2021 were conducted remotely.

PSC inspections by ship type

AMSA conducted 2820 PSC inspections in 2021.
 
2021 top five ship types
1. Bulk carrier – 1,712 (60.7%)
2. Container ships – 238 (8.4%)
3. Chemical tanker – 191 (6.8%)
4. General Cargo/multi-purpose – 156 (5.5%)
5. Oil tankers 124 – (4.4%)

Table 3 – Total ships inspected by ship type

Ship type 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021
Bulk carrier 1,732 1,585 1,826 1,840 1,712
Chemical tanker 181 179 201 235 191
Combination carrier 1 0 0 1 4
Commercial yacht 1 0 0 0 1
Container ship 297 311 327 263 238
Gas carrier 52 53 77 55 24
General cargo/ multi-purpose ship 184 154 129 135 156
Heavy load carrier 19 30 40 36 27
High speed passenger craft 0 0 0 0 0
Livestock carrier 49 52 56 29 36
MODU or FPSO 2 0 0 0 0
NLS tanker 27 25 30 31 27
Offshore service vessel 17 19 12 15 10
Oil tanker 194 155 168 126 124
Oil tanker/ chemical tanker 0 0 0 2 16
Oil Tanker/ NLS Tanker 0 0 0 0 1
Other types of ship 29 14 21 18 26
Passenger ship 47 55 56 23 2
Refrigerated cargo ship 2 3 2 1 4
Ro-ro cargo ship 6 2 9 2 4
Ro-ro passenger ship 0 1 0 1 0
Special purpose ship 8 7 10 8 5
Tugboat 28 30 24 26 18
Vehicle carrier 180 181 172 122 129
Wood-chip carrier 72 66 62 52 65
Totals 3,128 2,922 3,222 3,021 2,820

Table 3 shows the number of inspections by ship type from 2017 to 2021.

Inspection by location

Of the 53 ports where inspections were conducted, the top five ports accounted for 43.6% per cent of the 2,820 initial PSC inspections undertaken as shown in Table 4.

Table 4 – PSC inspections 2021 top 15 locations 

  2017 2018 2019 2020 2021 % of total in 2021
Port Hedland 311 441 694 497 536 19.0%
Fremantle 416 410 382 312 280 9.9%
Brisbane 278 238 249 248 249 8.8%
Sydney 205 190 282 249 174 6.2%
Gladstone 206 181 147 214 164 5.8%
Newcastle 316 212 207 235 163 5.8%
Dampier 187 156 159 175 155 5.5%
Port Adelaide 88 99 56 109 132 4.7%
Melbourne 156 156 151 104 130 4.6%
Hay Point 180 155 184 157 124 4.4%
Geraldton 94 83 100 74 90 3.2%
Bunbury 32 33 31 58 87 3.1%
Port Kembla 83 49 43 62 74 2.6%
Townsville 100 81 75 75 63 2.2%
Port Walcott 96 110 137 58 45 1.6%
Bell Bay 43 41 40 35 45 1.6%

As in previous years, in 2021 the greatest numbers of PSC initial inspections were undertaken in Western Australia, followed by Queensland and New South Wales. Inspections by state are shown in Table 5.

Table 5 – PSC inspections in 2021 by state/territory

State/territory PSC inspections
Western Australia 1214
Queensland 720
New South Wales 411
Victoria 173
South Australia 166
Tasmania 90
Northern Territory 44
Other Territory (Christmas Island, Cocos Keeling) 2
Total 2820

Figure 2 – PSC inspections in 2021 by state/territory

Figure 2 – PSC inspections in 2021 by state/territory

Inspections by flag State

In 2021, Panama remained the flag State with the largest number of ships inspected by AMSA, with 624 Panamanian ships (22 per cent of the total) being subject to an initial PSC inspection.

The top five flag States remains unchanged since 2015 and inspections of ships from Panama, Liberia, Marshall Islands, Hong Kong China and Singapore accounted for 72 per cent of all PSC inspections in 2021. The top 12 flags, as listed in Table 6, accounted for 2,505 inspections, or 89 per cent of all inspections.

A five-year breakdown of the number of ships inspected by flag State is provided in Table 7. The table does not show any significant change in the proportional inspection rates by flag States over the last five years.

Table 6 – PSC inspections by top 12 flag States in 2021

Top 12 flag States 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021
PANAMA 763 622 678 703 624
MARSHALL ISLANDS 337 377 405 397 429
LIBERIA 304 340 401 399 378
HONG KONG, CHINA 311 306 399 330 358
SINGAPORE 326 292 289 295 238
MALTA 210 186 191 184 143
BAHAMAS 121 97 119 114 89
CYPRUS 73 63 66 54 57
NORWAY 55 53 70 55 56
JAPAN 60 54 58 66 49
GREECE 49 60 63 47 42
ISLE OF MAN 52 54 54 40 42

Note: figures in bold are not in the top 12 in those years.

Table 7 – Total ships inspected by flag State

Flag State 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021
ANTIGUA & BARBUDA 44 31 30 37 36
BAHAMAS 121 98 119 114 89
BANGLADESH 0 0 0 0 1
BARBADOS 3 5 1 2 1
BELGIUM 3 8 3 12 3
BELIZE 0 1 0 0 0
BERMUDA 15 11 17 7 3
BRUNEI DARUSSALAM 1 1 0 0 0
CAYMAN ISLANDS 34 32 29 29 25
CHINA 53 46 63 36 41
COMOROS 1 0 0 0 0
COOK ISLANDS 7 5 5 8 9
CROATIA 5 3 0 1 1
CYPRUS 73 63 66 54 57
DENMARK 16 12 24 12 10
DOMINICA 0 0 1 0 0
EGYPT 0 1 0 0 0
FIJI 4 2 0 0 0
FRANCE 8 3 8 3 0
GERMANY 9 6 4 1 3
GIBRALTAR 4 7 2 2 3
GREECE 49 60 63 47 42
HONG KONG, CHINA 312 306 399 330 358
INDIA 9 11 6 5 7
INDONESIA 0 2 0 0 1
IRAN (ISLAMIC REPUBLIC OF) 1 0 0 0 0
ISLE OF MAN 52 54 54 40 42
ITALY 16 21 24 20 9
JAMAICA 0 0 2 0 1
JAPAN 60 55 58 66 49
KOREA (THE REPUBLIC OF) 48 36 37 27 23
KUWAIT 4 4 4 3 3
LIBERIA 304 340 401 399 378
LIBYA 0 1 2 0 1
LUXEMBOURG 7 5 16 5 8
MALAYSIA 8 10 12 8 6
MALTA 210 186 191 184 143
MARSHALL ISLANDS 337 377 405 397 429
MONTENEGRO 0 0 0 0 1
NETHERLANDS 20 18 22 23 14
NEW ZEALAND 3 3 2 1 2
NORWAY 55 52 70 55 56
PAKISTAN 1 0 0 1 0
PANAMA 761 621 678 703 624
PAPUA NEW GUINEA 7 4 0 1 0
PHILIPPINES 19 23 11 9 7
PORTUGAL 31 43 42 35 34
QATAR 0 2 0 5 3
RUSSIAN FEDERATION 0 0 1 0 0
SAINT VINCENT AND THE GRENADINES 4 2 0 0 1
SAMOA 0 0 0 0 1
SAUDI ARABIA 1 0 2 0 0
SINGAPORE 328 292 289 295 238
SOUTH AFRICA 0 0 0 0 1
SPAIN 0 1 2 1 0
SRI LANKA 1 0 1 0 1
SWEDEN 10 7 7 2 6
SWITZERLAND 7 5 1 1 1
TAIWAN (PROVINCE OF CHINA) 7 4 9 10 10
TANZANIA (UNITED REPUBLIC OF) 1 0 0 0 0
THAILAND 9 9 6 6 10
TURKEY 3 1 3 1 2
TUVALU 1 0 1 2 1
UNITED KINGDOM 28 23 22 18 16
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA 5 2 2 0 2
VANUATU 7 5 4 3 5
VIETNAM 1 2 0 0 2
Total: 3128 2922 3222 3021 2820

Figure 3 represents inspections by flag State where 25 or more ships have been subjected to inspection during 2021. Flag States that have less than 25 inspections in a year are not considered to be statistically significant in this context.

Figure 3 – Distribution of PSC inspections by flag State

Figure 3 – Distribution of PSC inspections by flag State