46 U.S. Code § 50101 - Objectives and policy

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(a) Objectives.— It is necessary for the national defense and the development of the domestic and foreign commerce of the United States that the United States have a merchant marine—
(1) sufficient to carry the waterborne domestic commerce and a substantial part of the waterborne export and import foreign commerce of the United States and to provide shipping service essential for maintaining the flow of the waterborne domestic and foreign commerce at all times;
(2) capable of serving as a naval and military auxiliary in time of war or national emergency;
(3) owned and operated as vessels of the United States by citizens of the United States;
(4) composed of the best-equipped, safest, and most suitable types of vessels constructed in the United States and manned with a trained and efficient citizen personnel; and
(5) supplemented by efficient facilities for building and repairing vessels.
(b) Policy.— It is the policy of the United States to encourage and aid the development and maintenance of a merchant marine satisfying the objectives described in subsection (a).


(Pub. L. 109–304, § 8(b),Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1556; Pub. L. 111–84, div. C, title XXXV, § 3511,Oct. 28, 2009, 123 Stat. 2722.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised Section Source (U.S. Code) Source (Statutes at Large)
46 App.:861.
June 5, 1920, ch. 250, § 1, 41 Stat. 988; Exec. Order No. 6166, June 10, 1933, § 12; June 29, 1936, ch. 858, title II, § 204, title IX, § 904, 49 Stat. 1987, 2016; Pub. L. 97–31, § 12(33), Aug. 6, 1981, 95 Stat. 156.
46 App.:891.
May 22, 1928, ch. 675, § 1, 45 Stat. 689.
46 App.:1101.
June 29, 1936, ch. 858, title I, § 101, 49 Stat. 1985; Pub. L. 91–469, § 1, Oct. 21, 1970, 84 Stat. 1018.

This section consolidates the source provisions to eliminate repetition.

2009—Subsec. (a)(4). Pub. L. 111–84inserted “constructed in the United States” after “vessels”.

The table below lists the classification updates, since Jan. 3, 2012, for this section. Updates to a broader range of sections may be found at the update page for containing chapter, title, etc.

The most recent Classification Table update that we have noticed was Tuesday, August 13, 2013

An empty table indicates that we see no relevant changes listed in the classification tables. If you suspect that our system may be missing something, please double-check with the Office of the Law Revision Counsel.

46 USCDescription of ChangeSession YearPublic LawStatutes at Large


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