In the UK, what is a Pilotage Exemption Certificate?

MCA Oral Exam Questions

A certificate issued by a competent harbour authority to a bona fide master or first mate of a specified ship, so that, when in the charge of the holder, the ship may be exempted from taking an authorised pilot when navigating in the pilotage waters under the jurisdiction of the issuing authority.

A PEC is valid for the whole or specified parts of the pilotage area, on a specified ship or ships. Applicants are usually required to have performed a number of passages into and out of the port in the previous year and are subject to annual examination of experience and local knowledge in order to renew the PEC.