IMO Revised Compendium on Facilitation and Electronic Business

( The mandatory requirement for national governments to introduce electronic information exchange between ships and ports came into effect from 8 April 2019, under the FAL Convention. According to the Standard 1.3bis, Public Authorities have to establish systems for the electronic exchange of information by 8 April 2019. A period of no less than 12 months for transition to the mandatory use of the systems shall be provided from the date of the introduction of such systems. 
The IMO Compendium is a tool for software developers that design the systems needed to support transmission, receipt, and response via electronic data exchange of information required for the arrival, stay, and departure of the ship, persons, and cargo to a port. By harmonizing the data elements required during a port call and by standardizing electronic messages, the IMO Compendium facilitates the exchange of information ship to shore and the interoperability of single windows, reducing the administrative burden for ships linked to formalities in ports.


The IMO Compendium consists of an IMO Data Set and IMO Reference Data Model agreed by the main organizations involved in the development of standards for the electronic exchange of information related to the FAL Convention: the World Customs Organization (WCO), the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) and International Organization for Standardization (ISO).  

Since July 2019, the IMO Expert Group on Data Harmonization (EGDH) is responsible for the technical maintenance of the IMO Compendium and for further expanding its data set and data model to areas beyond the FAL Convention, including exchange of logistics and operational port and shipping data. The first meeting of this expert group took place from 4 to 8 November 2019 at IMO.



The preamble of FAL.5/Circ.41 is the following:

  1. The Facilitation Committee, at its forty-third session (8 to 12 April 2019), approved the Revised IMO Compendium on facilitation and electronic business, as set out in the annex.
  2. The Committee recalled that this revised Compendium refers to the data elements related to the FAL Convention.
  3. The Committee agreed to keep the Compendium under review and further development, including in relation to an expanded role into data elements beyond those mandated by the FAL Convention.
  4. Member Governments are invited to bring the Compendium to the attention of all parties concerned.
  5. Member Governments, international organizations and non-governmental organizations with consultative status are also invited to bring to the attention of the Committee, at the earliest opportunity, the results of the experience gained from the use of the Compendium for consideration of action to be taken.
  6. This circular revokes FAL.5/Circ.40 issued on 4 July 2013. Any reference to FAL.5/Circ.40 and its corrigenda should be read as reference to the present circular.

Download of the FAL.5/Circ.41 by clicking below:


Source: IMO


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