According to the policy letter that the USCG issued on January 4, STCW endorsements will be issued in Basic and Advanced IGF Code Operations to mariners who voluntarily meet the STCW requirements for certification at the basic and advanced levels in IGF Code Operations.

Thus, the letter provides information on how to qualify for and request the endorsements. The Coast Guard is issuing these endorsements in response to industry requests and to facilitate maritime commerce. These endorsements are not currently mandated by Coast Guard regulation. However, because the United States is signatory to the STCW Convention, vessel owners and operators should be aware that their vessels are subject to foreign port state control actions, including detention, if mariners are not compliant with the STCW Convention and the STCW Code.

It is reported that the National Maritime Centre will  begin accepting applications for IGF Code Operations endorsements when this notice is published.

The Coast Guard will now issue MMC endorsements for Basic and Advanced IGF Code Operations to mariners who have voluntarily met the requirements for the endorsements. The Coast Guard expects that industry has already incurred costs from attending training for Basic and Advanced IGF Code Operations.

Yet, it is noted that

However, we do not have data on how many mariners have completed training in IGF Code Operations, or how many would ultimately complete training due to the issuance of CG-MMC Policy Letter 01-21. Therefore, we present here the total costs that may have occurred or would occur if our estimated population completes training for either Basic or Advanced IGF Code Operations.

Moreover, it is explained that the policy letter is not a substitute for applicable legal requirements, nor is it itself a rule. The Coast Guard does not currently require any mariner to obtain the endorsements discussed in CG-MMC Policy Letter 01-21. In other words, it is possible to comply with U.S. domestic legal obligations without undertaking the specific trainings, or obtaining the specific endorsements, described in CG-MMC Policy Letter 01-21.

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CG-MMC Policy Letter 01-21