Federal Maritime and Hydrographic Agency (BSH)

Today, BSH is Germany’s central provider of maritime services, with a focus on customer service and product quality. Its customers include shipping and other maritime industries and all those who need data and information about the oceans: business and science, federal and state authorities, departments, and political bodies.

As a partner to maritime shipping and a supporter of environmental conservation efforts and maritime uses, BSH:

  • supports maritime shipping and the maritime industry,
  • promotes sustainable use of the oceans,
  • ensures the continuity of measurements,
  • provides competent information about the status of the Northand Baltic Seas.

BSH tasks as an important provider of maritime services in Germany include: Environmental protection in maritime shipping (MARPOL, civil liability for oil pollution, Ballast Water Convention, oil identification); Maritime security; Hydrographic surveying, wreck search; Nautical information systems; Services to shipping (flag documents, Certificates of Competency for mariners, promotion of shipping); Warning services (water level foreasts and tide predictions, storm surge warning service, ice service); Monitoring of the sea (with regard to climate and environmental changes); Maritime geospatial data centre; Maritime spatial planning in the German Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ); Planning approval procedures for offshore wind farms and pipelines etc.