They register ships, which is similar to registering a car. It means they issue documentation, inspect the ship, and issue pollution prevention documents and other documents required to enter ports around the world.
Apparently, they haven't been doing a very good job lately.
THE European Union has confirmed that the Hellenic Register of Shipping is banned from classing new ships for 17 months while it attempts to save its status as a recognised organisation.
The decision, published in the EU’s official journal, sets stringent conditions following the identification of “serious shortcomings” in Hellenic’s quality control.