Code of Ethics
Britannica Maritime Ltd (Britannica), a Ship Classification Society, lives on its reputation. Acceptance of its technical work can only be maintained by continuously proving integrity and competence.
The decisive bodies by which demand for the work and therefore for the existence of Britannica is ultimately governed are National Administrations and Underwriters.
Britannica, with its classification work, covers fields which are it’s for historic reasons, some of which would, however, be otherwise within the responsibility of the National Administrations. Classification is part of the required care for the overall safety of ships for which the National Administrations have traditionally accepted responsibility and Recognized Classification Societies’ basic requirements for structural strength and mechanical and electrical systems have thus been made mandatory.
A good part of Britannica’ sources of work is delegated statutory duties. The scope and extent of such delegations depend on how the National Administrations judge the abilities, competence and the professional ethics of Britannica.
The relation to Underwriters can only work by virtue of the fact that they continue to have a need for the services rendered by Britannica. If, in their view, the statements of Britannica become insufficient or unreliable, underwriters may use their own sources.
Britannica also provides certification services in various management systems and technical services to various engineering industries which are reputed and valued in the respective fields.
Anything that is detrimental to Britannica’ reputation for integrity, reliability, safety and competence, is therefore avoided.
The observance of the Code of Ethics is an essential measure for safeguarding the reputation of Britannica.
All employees of Britannica realize that, when speaking for or acting on behalf of the Society, their actions are taken as indicative of the Society.
Britannica and its employees shall refrain from any improper or questionable methods including the use of false, incorrect, incomplete or tendentious information in soliciting work and shall decline to pay or to accept commissions for securing such work. They shall not use unethical means to obtain advancement in the field of services provided or to injure others in the community.
2.2 Confidentiality of Information
Britannica and its employees shall consider all submitted information and survey reports to be proprietary and the contents or copies shall not be made available to another party, except as defined in the Quality Management System Documentation, required by applicable legislation court order, legal proceedings, adhering to flag state requests or by Owners’ authorization.
Britannica and its employees shall carry out their work without in any way harming the intellectual property rights of shipyards, equipment suppliers, ship owners and any other agency/organisation they may have occasion to deal with in the course of their work including patents, licenses, know-how, or any other kind of knowledge whose use is legally protected at national or international level . Under no circumstances shall Britannica and its employees pass on or divulge commercially relevant data obtained in the course of their work of inspecting, checking, and monitoring ships under construction or repair.
2.3 Issuing Documents without Appropriate Action
No employee shall issue, stamp or endorse certificates/documents without performance of the required / appropriate actions.
3.1.1 No employee shall act in a manner that compromises safety of life and property or damage to environment or which leads to the lowering of technical standards.
3.1.2 No employee shall have any business or other interest or any personal /family links with the client which may affect strict impartiality in the performance of his / her work.
3.1.3 No employee shall act in a manner which leads to the lowering of the reputation of Britannica or which is detrimental to the image of Britannica.
3.2.1 Britannica shall market its technical and related activities in a manner considered necessary to achieve its objectives. However, marketing methods shall not be pursued in a manner which involves deliberate misrepresentation in order to obtain business to the detriment of other Classification Societies.
3.2.2 Britannica shall not knowingly pass on to another party any information which is client confidential so as to place Britannica in a position of advantage.
3.2.3 Britannica shall not knowingly undermine the reputation of another Classification Society by
spreading false, incorrect or biased information.
3.2.4 Britannica may decide to apply and publicize any change to its rules that goes beyond the standards or procedures established within IACS (of which Britannica is a part). However, when notifying the industry of these changes, Britannica shall do so in a manner that is supportive of the image and aims of IACS and suitably acknowledges IACS initiatives, if any, in the field addressed.
3.2.5 In an effort to obtain the classification of a ship changing flag, Britannica shall not misrepresent the degree of present recognition by the new National Administration.
3.3 Dual Classification
Britannica shall not intentionally ignore existing dual classification arrangements with another Society, i.e. perform surveys as if the ship was single class only, without notifying the other Society at all.
Britannica shall not prevent the other Society from participating directly in a survey on a vessel which enjoys dual classification, should that Society wish to do so.