The EU Regulation 725/2004, the ISPS code and the additional IMO security regulations are applicable to passenger ships; cargo ships of 500 gross tonnage and upward; Mobile Offshore Drilling Units, and the port facilities that serve them. The ISPS Code and the other IMO security regulations form part of the "Safety of Life at Sea" (SOLAS) Convention and refer to equipment, training and a quality management system regarding security.

The supervision regarding security on the Dutch flagged ships has been assigned to the Netherlands Shipping Inspectorate (NSI), similar to other tasks based on the Shipping Act. NSI will also perform Port State Control security inspections on foreign flagged vessels, based on international agreements within the Paris Memorandum of Understanding on Port State Control.

Recognised Security Organisations

The ISPS code offers the opportunity to delegate certain tasks to so called Recognised Security Organisations (RSO's). The Dutch government has chosen to delegate the approval of Ship Security Plans, the on board verifications and (as of August 1, 2006) the issuing of the International Ship Security Certificates (ISSC) for ships registered in the Netherlands, to the RSO's.

For these tasks, NSI has selected seven, EU-approved, classification societies, which have been appointed as RSO by the minister of Transport and Water Management. NSI will supervise the functioning of these RSO's, amongst others through audits, random examinations of Ship Security Plans and performing or attending on board verifications.