§ Mr. Charles Kennedy
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what plans he has, following the findings of the recent report into seaworthiness by the Marine Safety Agency, to bring forward further regulations aimed at(a) tightening existing laws and safety standards and (b) giving greater powers of detention to the Marine Safety Agency; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Norris
The Government believe that proper enforcement of existing international conventions is the key to securing better standards. The Department of Transport will continue both to operate an effective programme of port state inspections and to publish details of substandard ships. We shall also maintain our efforts within the International Maritime Organisation to ensure that all flag states exercise proper control over their ships. We are considering the scope of the United Kingdom's powers of detention as part of our response to Lord Donaldson's report into the prevention of pollution from merchant shipping.