Port State control is a system of harmonized inspection procedures designed to target substandard ships with the main objective to bring them into conformity with international law and regulations.
Finland has been a member of the Paris Memorandum of Understanding since 1982 and performs the inspections in accordance with the agreed procedures and harmonization scheme of the Organization.
Finland participates actively in developing the guidelines and procedures for port State control within the framework of the European Union, the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) and the Paris Memorandum of Understanding.
The mandate to perform inspections is given in the Ship Safety Control Act (370/1995) and the Government Decree on Inspecting Foreign Ships in Finland (1241/2010), which comprises the obligations and procedures of Directive 2009/16/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council on port State control and the Paris Memorandum of Understanding.
The Finnish Transport Safety Agency (Trafi) more precisely its Vessels Department oversees and coordinates port State control inspections.
Port State control inspections are performed by the Inspection Department, which has four regional offices situated in Helsinki, Turku, Vaasa and Lappeenranta. The regional offices have sub-offices in Kotka, Mariehamn, Oulu and Savonlinna.
There are currently 24 duly authorized port State control inspectors performing the inspections in the ports. All inspectors also perform a wide range of flag State surveys and inspections, including security inspections (ISPS).