The Korean Shipping Association, which regulates and oversees departures and arrivals of domestic passenger ships, is a private group, unlike many of its counterparts in other countries.
The association gets paperwork from captains on crew, passengers and cargo, ensures that ships undertake safety measures such as evacuation drills and decides whether ships are safe to depart. Its biggest business, however, is selling insurance products to shipping companies and operators.
Since the Sewol disaster, the oceans ministry has been considering taking the job of overseeing passenger-ship safety away from the shipping association, ministry official Kwon Jun-young said. Kwon said they are discussing which agency or agencies should take on the job.
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