IPCSA welcomes FAL Committee decision to mandate Single Window systems


Congratulations to the International Maritime Organization’s Facilitation Committee (FAL), which has announced that the use of Single Window systems for ship data exchange is to become mandatory in ports around the world.

The decision was part of amendments to the FAL Convention announced by the Committee and due to enter into force on 1 January 2024.

“Making Single Window mandatory is an important step in the acceleration of digitalisation in shipping, and one that is welcomed wholeheartedly by the International Port Community Systems Association,” said Richard Morton, secretary general of IPCSA.


“While IPCSA is perhaps best known for representing Port Community System operators around the world, our membership also includes a significant number of Single Window operators.”

From Barbados Port to Puertos del Estado, the public body responsible for state-owned Spanish ports; from the Moroccan National Single Window, PortNet, to Trade-Van in Chinese Taipei, IPCSA has members from every region who share their experience and expertise on Single Window and Maritime Single Window development and operation.

“Port Community Systems and Single Windows are based on the same principles and with the same purpose – to enable the efficient, secure transfer of electronic information through a single entry point, hence eliminating paperwork and duplication, and thereby supporting the swift and smooth movement of cargo through the ports and the wider supply chain,” says Richard Morton.

The FAL Committee’s amendments will make it mandatory for public authorities to establish, maintain and use Single Window systems for the electronic exchange of information required on arrival, stay and departure of ships in ports.

In addition, public authorities will have to combine or coordinate the electronic transmission of the data to ensure that information is submitted or provided only once and reused to the maximum extent possible – a concept that IPCSA has championed since it was founded in 2011.

The FAL Committee also approved related guidelines on the authentication, integrity and confidentiality of information exchanges via Maritime Single Windows and related services and revised guidelines for setting up a Maritime Single Window.

For Morton Information go to: Single window for ship data exchange to become mandatory