The Port of Gothenburg is an important part of the transport and logistics system in Sweden. Sabotage or terrorist attacks could have a significant impact on key industries and the infrastructure.
Following the terrorist attacks in the USA on September 11, 2001, the International Maritime Organization (IMO) updated what is known as the SOLAS (Safety of Life at Sea) Convention and created the ISPS Code. The ISPS Code (International Ship and Port Facility Security Code) is designed to protect shipping against external threats.
The Code applies to vessels and port facilities, i.e. locations where people or freight move to or from vessels or where port services are provided. The new rules came into effect on July 1, 2004. In Swedish, the term sjöfartsskydd (shipping safety and security) is used to distinguish these special security issues from other safety at sea issues.
The ISPS Code
The Code will prevent the following:
• Damage to or destruction of a port facility or vessel
• Hijacking or seizing of a vessel
• Manipulation of loads
• Unauthorised access
• Smuggling of weapons
• Use of a vessel as a weapon
The ISPS Code is applied by the following:
• Passenger vessels operating in international traffic
• Freight vessels (including high-speed vessels) with a gross tonnage of 500 tonnes or more and which are operating in international traffic
• Movable drilling platforms at sea
• Port facilities that serve any of the above-mentioned vessels
The rules lay down three basic requirements for ports:
1. Each port facility is required to carry out a safety and security inspection (the facility owner prepares the documentation).
2. A safety and security plan must be drawn up on three levels. The plans must be approved by the Swedish Transport Agency and are valid for a maximum of five years. Level 1 = normal situation; Level 2 = increased level of security; Level 3 = a probable and imminent risk. The Swedish National Police Board then decides, in consultation with the Swedish Transport Agency, which level will apply at Swedish ports.
Safety and security plans must state how security work is organised and which security measures are applied in conjunction with entry as well as surveillance and inspection of loads, people and vessel deliveries. The resulting measures are designed to avert unauthorised access and to prevent weapons or other dangerous devices from being brought on board that could be used against people and property. Measures must be presented for the three security levels, where the higher levels entail an increasing degree of control and surveillance.
3. A Port Facility Security Officer (PFSO) must be appointed for each port facility.
The PFSO is responsible for ensuring that safety and security plans are drawn up and applied, that shortcomings are rectified, that staff are trained and that contact is maintained with the person or persons who have the equivalent positions on board the vessels.
All employees at the Port of Gothenburg and terminal companies have completed the interactive ISPS Code training programme. Staff at the Energy Port in Gothenburg also receive further safety and security training.
AEO (Authorised Economic Operator)
The Port of Gothenburg is AEO-certified. Certification is the responsibility of Swedish Customs and is an important element in safety and security.
AEO is a joint EU certification programme aimed at achieving a higher level of security in the world and efficient, standardised customs handling within the EU. AEO status is valid in all EU member states and all companies that are part of the supply chain can apply to become an AEO. This applies to manufacturers, exporters, forwarders, storage companies, customs representatives, carriers and importers.