IMO Member States Must Progress on Key Sulphur Cap Issues at Critical Meeting in July

The shipping industry – as represented by its international trade associations (BIMCO, ICS, INTERCARGO, INTERTANKO and WSC) – calls on the Member States of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) to make progress on key challenges around the global sulphur cap to avoid compromising safety or unfairly penalising individual ships.

The trade associations have co-sponsored a number of submissions to IMO to help smooth the implementation of the global 0.5 percent sulphur in fuel cap, in advance of the critical meeting that will be held in London during the second week of July.

These submissions include papers on:

  • a standard format for a ship specific implementation plan with many actions ships may need to consider for achieving compliance but also a call for a practical and pragmatic approach from IMO Member States when verifying compliance with the 0.50% global sulphur cap;
  • safety implications associated with 2020 fuels and their respective challenges;
  • a draft standard for reporting on fuel oil non-availability;
  • proposals for amendments to MARPOL Annex VI to require sampling points for fuel oil; and
  • verification issues and control mechanism and actions.

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Shipping Industry Very Concerned About Italian Policy on Migrants Rescued at Sea

ICS is deeply concerned about the apparent new policy of the Italian Government to close its ports to migrants rescued by vessels operated by humanitarian NGOs.  The refusal by Italy to allow rescued persons to be disembarked could have serious implications for the safety and welfare of these distressed people, including children and pregnant women.   

To its great credit, the government of Italy has consistently permitted prompt and predictable disembarkation of people rescued by merchant ships as well as by vessels operated by humanitarian NGOs.  But following the election of the new Italian Government, the crisis now seems to be taking an ever more political direction.

If NGO vessels are prevented from disembarking rescued persons in Italy, this would also have significant implications for merchant ships and the movement of trade throughout the Mediterranean, as merchant ships would again have to become involved in a greater number of rescues.

The global shipping industry, as represented by the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS), is committed to meeting its obligations under the UN International Maritime Organization (IMO) Safety of Life at Sea Convention (SOLAS) to come to the rescue of any person in distress at sea.   Since the migrant crisis in the Mediterranean escalated three years ago, over 50,000 people have already been rescued by merchant ships, with many more rescued by military vessels and boats operated by humanitarian NGOs.

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ICS Applauds ‘Paris Agreement for Shipping’

The International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) has welcomed the high level strategy for the further reduction of shipping’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, adopted on 13 April by the UN International Maritime Organization (IMO).

ICS Secretary General, Peter Hinchliffe said: “This is a ground breaking agreement – a Paris Agreement for shipping – that sets a very high level of ambition for the future reduction of CO2 emissions. We are confident this will give the shipping industry the clear signal it needs to get on with the job of developing zero CO2 fuels, so that the entire sector will be in a position to decarbonise completely, consistent with the 1.5 degree climate change goal.”

He added: “The agreed IMO objective of cutting the sector’s total GHG emissions by at least 50% before 2050, as part of a continuing pathway for further reduction, is very ambitious indeed, especially when account is taken of current projections for trade growth as the world’s population and levels of prosperity continue to increase.” Read more

ICS Publishes Latest Flag State Performance Table with New Criteria Included

The International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) has published the latest version of its Flag State Performance Table, which can be downloaded free of charge via the ICS website. http://www.ics-shipping.org/free-resources/flag-state-performance-table.

The Table provides a helpful indication of the performance of individual flag states worldwide, which analyses how the administrations included deliver against a number of criteria such as port state control records, ratification of international maritime Conventions and attendance at IMO meetings. This year, a new criteria on participation in the ‘IMO Member State Audit Scheme’ has been included.

ICS Deputy Secretary General, Simon Bennett, remarked: “Following the entry into force of amendments to the relevant IMO Conventions, the IMO Member State Audit Scheme has become mandatory. This is a significant development that should make further contributions to improving maritime safety and the prevention of pollution.”

He added, “ICS also recently released a new interactive version of the Table, which contains a search facility and allows users to compare and contrast the performance of up to four flag states at a time”.

The 2017/2018 Shipping Industry Flag State Performance Table is currently being distributed among ICS national shipowners’ associations and their member companies, which cover over 80% of the world merchant fleet.

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ICS Appoints Guy Platten as New Secretary General

Following an extensive and rigorous selection procedure, the Board of the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) is delighted to announce the appointment of Guy Platten to the role of Secretary General.

Esben Poulsson, ICS Chairman said: “This proved a difficult decision for us, as we interviewed several strong candidates. However, the decision to appoint Guy was taken unanimously by the Board. He will bring with him a broad range of skills including time at sea, demonstrable commercial success, and association work illustrated by his current successful tenure at the U.K. Chamber of Shipping.

“In a fast changing world, ICS, like any successful association, needs to be more aware than ever of the needs and demands of its members and to truly add value, be it on the regulatory front or in respect of the numerous other challenges facing the industry. ICS is the industry’s leading voice, with the important remit of highlighting the great improvements the industry has made and will continue to make as a key contributor to world trade.”

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Yemen Conflict Forces New Security Recommendations

Maritime Security in The Southern Red Sea and Bab al-Mandeb_001

In response to the threats arising from the conflict in Yemen, BIMCO, ICS and INTERTANKO have published interim guidance on maritime security in the southern Red Sea and Bab al-Mandeb. Shipowners and operators should be aware of new threat patterns in the area.

The European Union Naval Force (EUNAVFOR) and the Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) have advised that a range of threats other than piracy, such as sea mines and water-borne improvised explosive devices (WBIEDs), are potential risks in the area.

“We’ve been advised that these threats are real, and therefore decided to provide guidance for ships operating in the area. We have seen two incidents in January, and we want to make sure owners and operators are aware and advise their crews accordingly,” says Angus Frew, BIMCO Secretary General and CEO.  Read more

ICS Chairman Commends China’s Positive Engagement with IMO

MarintecIn his keynote speech to the Marintec conference in Shanghai today, Mr Poulsson welcomed China’s close adherence to the implementation of national maritime regulations, applicable to visiting foreign-flag ships, in a manner consistent with the international maritime safety and pollution prevention Conventions adopted by IMO.

He said that China generally avoided the tendency – unfortunately displayed by some other IMO Member States – towards adopting unilateral shipping regulations at variance to rules agreed internationally.

EU Member States, for example, despite what were understood to be undertakings to the contrary, appear to be pressing ahead with the implementation of a regional CO2 data collection system for ships (including visiting non-EU flag ships) which is very different to that agreed by IMO for global application.

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ICS encouraged by EU faith in UN IMO to further reduce shipping’s carbon emissions

Simon BennettSpeaking from the UN Climate Change Conference in Bonn, ICS Director of Policy, Simon Bennett, has commented on the provisional decision by the European Union not to include shipping within the full scope of the regional EU Emissions Trading System (ETS). 

“We think that this demonstrates confidence within the EU institutions in the current progress being made at the UN IMO to develop an ambitious strategy that will deliver additional CO2 reduction measures, consistent with the shipping industry’s own vision of zero emissions, as soon as possible.”

Mr Bennett added: “We understand that the date which the EU has agreed for when the European Commission will next closely examine the progress that has been made globally is consistent with those time lines agreed by all IMO Member States.”

ICS – the global trade association for shipowners – believes the decision also shows a welcome recognition within the EU, including the European Commission, that ETS, is an inappropriate tool for application to an industry like shipping. This is because of the huge risk of creating serious market distortions and the administrative challenge of incorporating tens of thousands of ships operated by thousands of SMEs into a discredited system which the EU is already struggling to reform.

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ICS ‘Deeply Concerned’ by Canadian Legislation that will Interfere with International Maritime Trade  

Simon BennettThe Canadian Parliament is giving consideration to legislation that would have the effect of establishing a moratorium on the shipment of crude oil in the waters of Northern British Columbia (Bill C-48: An Act respecting the regulation of vessels that transport crude oil or persistent oil to or from ports or marine installations located along British Columbia’s north coast). The International Chamber of Shipping (ICS), representing the world’s national shipowners’ associations and 80% of the world merchant fleet, has voiced deep concern about this proposed legislation which it says will interfere with international maritime trade.

“Such a draconian step could lead to serious concerns being raised by Canada’s international trading partners” said ICS Director of Policy and External Relations, Simon Bennett.

ICS asserts that the proposals have not been developed through an evidence-based process, and believes that it would establish an unwelcome precedent that might be emulated elsewhere, including by individual U.S. States, with the potential to impact greatly on the efficiency of world trade, as well as that of Canada.

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Take Your Seat for the ICS International Shipping Conference

Esben at ConferenceEmissions, green shipping, manpower – the debate at the International Chamber of Shipping’s (ICS) conference last month was fast paced and at times controversial. With a capacity crowd, and a full LISW schedule there were some who were disappointed when they found this annual highlight clashing with other commitments.

Those who couldn’t make the event can now experience what they missed at this year’s International Shipping Conference. ICS has produced a video of the conference, and today the shipping community can share in the debate first hand.

For many years members and supporters have requested that ICS record the Conference, and this LISW year, with such a strong line up of participants, provided the ideal opportunity.

During the Conference ICS had many positive comments from visitors to the event, who enjoyed watching the high quality moderators challenge the expert panel members. Shipowners and NGOs grappled with the practical steps needed to reduce carbon emissions, panel members pondered whether zero emission vessels were in the realm of fantasy, and there was much debate over the role of crewless ships in our future.

This is all now delivered online through four videos, produced in conjunction with KVH Videotel. Each covers one of the four panel sessions:

• CO2 Reduction: Developing the IMO Road Map
• New Environmental Regulation: Costs of Compliance
• Maintaining Free Trade: Dusk or New Dawn?
• Decent Work for Seafarers: Are We Delivering

For your seat at this year’s ICS Conference click here and choose your debate.

ICS Appoints New Marine Committee Chairman

Martin CresswellThe Board of Directors of the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) has appointed Mr Martin Cresswell, Technical Director of the Hong Kong Shipowners Association, as the new Chairman of the ICS Marine Committee.

He succeeds Peter Bond (Cyprus Shipping Chamber) who recently stood down following four years of service as Chairman of ICS’s principal technical committee.

“The Marine Committee is very much the engine room of ICS, overseeing the work of the many ICS technical committees and the development of policy positions which we represent at IMO meetings, on behalf of the global industry as represented by our member national shipowner associations” said ICS Secretary General, Peter Hinchliffe. “We are very fortunate to have signed up Martin as Marine Committee Chairman with his tremendous experience of commercial ship operations and his understanding of the great importance of ensuring that regulators make sensible and practical decisions, as part of our collective effort to further improve maritime safety and the industry’s environmental performance.”

Shaping the Future of Shipping: ICS Launches New Brand

Shaping the future....The International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) has used London International Shipping Week to launch a new brand identity, to better serve its important role as the global trade association for shipowners, representing national shipowners’ associations from 37 countries and over 80% of the world merchant fleet.

Speaking from the British Library in London at the brand launch today, ICS Chairman, Esben Poulsson explained:

“Over the next 30 years, new technologies and environmental challenges will completely transform shipping: a vital industry that moves the essentials of life and around 90% of global trade.

“Together with our member national associations, we are working to help shape a vision for the future, in which shipping will become ever more efficient and environmentally sustainable.  Our contemporary new brand seeks to reflect what we do with a refreshed and vibrant colour palette, appropriate to a modern global trade association that represents one of the world’s most dynamic industries.”

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What is Top of Your Agenda? ICS Addresses Key Issues at its International Shipping Conference 2017

ICS TradeWinds adThe International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) will address some of the biggest concerns in modern shipping at its annual conference this year, to be held during London International Shipping Week (LISW). Secretary-General to the IMO, Kitack Lim, and ICS Chairman, Esben Poulsson, will be spearheading discussions, following what will have been be an eventful two months in the industry’s legislative calendar.

ICS’s flagship International Shipping Conference will take place on Wednesday 13th September at The British Library, and will focus clearly on an agenda of key issues that are at the forefront of shipping today:  CO2 reduction and environmental regulation, the maintenance of free trade and the role of the seafarer.

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High Seas Governance Must Take Account of Existing IMO Framework

KIRAN KHOSLAAt the United Nations in New York, the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) is representing shipowners at a UN Preparatory Committee which is developing a new legal instrument, under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), which will apply to ‘high seas’ areas beyond national jurisdiction.

The principal aim of this UN work is to address the vacuum that exists with respect to issues such as preserving global fish stocks from unregulated fishing, and damage to marine ecosystems from ocean acidification and plastics caused by land based agriculture and industry.

ICS says that developing new measures applicable to the high seas is undoubtedly a very important and legitimate exercise, but that it wishes to ensure that the interests of shipping will not be unwittingly damaged.

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ICS Pleased with IMO Progress on Environmental Issues

 

ICS logoCommenting on the outcome of last week’s meeting of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC), the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) – which represents the world’s national shipowners’ associations – says it is pleased with the progress made by IMO Member States on a number of critical environmental regulatory issues that will have a profound impact on the future structure of the global shipping industry.

Green House Gas Reduction Strategy

ICS says that IMO has made a good start on the development of a CO2 reduction strategy which it is confident will match the ambition of the Paris Agreement on climate change, and that significant progress was made on the general outline of an initial strategy for adoption in 2018.

ICS Director of Policy, Simon Bennett, said “Though no detailed decisions have yet been taken by IMO, the industry’s specific proposals have been well received by a number of governments among both developed and developing nations, and there is generally willingness on all sides to give these further consideration at the next IMO working group on the strategy in October.”

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Joint Industry Launches Latest Industry Guidelines on Cyber Security

The second edition of The Guidelines on Cyber Security Onboard Ships has been released.  The latest practical advice has been compiled by the joint industry group, which is led by BIMCO and now includes new members OCIMF and IUMI, as well as the original contributors CLIA, ICS, INTERCARGO and INTERTANKO.

The second edition includes information on insurance issues and how to effectively segregate networks, as well as new practical advice on managing the ship to shore interface, and how to handle cyber security during port calls and when communicating with the shore side.

The chapters on ‘contingency planning’ and ‘responding to and recovering from cyber incidents’ have been rewritten to reflect the fact that the guidelines are aimed specifically at ships and the remote conditions prevailing if a ship’s defences have been breached.

The Guidelines on Cyber Security Onboard Ships have also been aligned with the recommendations given in the International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) Guidelines on cyber risk management which were adopted in June 2017.

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Shipping Industry Unites to Propose Ambitious CO2 Reduction Objectives to Global Regulator

Four major international trade associations – BIMCO, INTERCARGO, International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) and INTERTANKO – have made a joint proposal to the UN International Maritime Organization (IMO) concerning ambitious CO2 reductions by the international shipping sector, which is responsible for transporting about 90% of global trade and 2.2% of the world’s annual man-made CO2 emissions.

The IMO Marine Environment Protection Committee will meet in London this July to begin the development of a strategy for the reduction of the sector’s CO2 emissions aligning the international shipping sector response to the 2015 Paris Agreement’s call for ambitious contributions to combat climate change. Read more

IMO Needs to Finalise Ballast Water Implementation Dates

Peter Hinchliffe small (2)The global shipping industry – as represented by the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) – has urged its global regulator, the International Maritime Organization (IMO), to back a carefully crafted proposal, from a broad coalition of governments, concerning the implementation dates for installing complicated new ballast water treatment systems.

“If this pragmatic proposal is agreed, this would allow shipping companies to identify and invest in far more robust technology to the benefit of the marine environment” said ICS Secretary General, Peter Hinchliffe.

ICS says that this IMO decision on dates, to be taken by a meeting of the Marine Environment Protection Committee during the first week of July – just two months before the entry into force of the IMO Ballast Water Management (BWM) Convention on 8 September 2017 – will be critical, having significant implications for around 40,000 existing ships.

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“Shipping Committed to Green Growth” ICS to Tell UN Ocean Conference

brochure-for-un-ocean-conference-on-sustainable-development-goals_001The high level United Nations Ocean Conference (5-9 June), organised by the UN General Assembly, opens today in New York.

On Tuesday 6 June, the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) will explain that the global shipping industry is fully committed to the UN Sustainable Development Goal for the protection of the Ocean.

ICS says that the decision by President Trump to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris Agreement on climate change will have no impact on the shipping industry’s strong commitment to reducing its CO2 emissions.

Speaking at a session on the prevention of ocean acidification, ICS will present some ambitious ‘aspirational objectives’ on CO2 reduction which the industry – responsible for moving about 90% of global trade – wants its regulator to adopt on behalf of the international shipping sector, in the same way that governments under the Paris Agreement, have adopted CO2 reduction commitments on behalf of their national economies. Read more

ICS Commits Shipping to Ambitious CO2 Reduction Objectives

Esben PoulssonIn a submission to IMO Member States, being made in conjunction with other shipping organisations, ICS will propose that IMO should adopt three Aspirational Objectives:

  • To maintain international shipping’s annual total CO2 emissions below 2008 levels
  • To reduce CO2 emissions per tonne-km, as an average across international shipping, by at least 50% by 2050, compared to 2008
  •  To reduce international shipping’s total annual CO2 emissions by an agreed percentage by 2050, compared to 2008, as a point on a continuing trajectory of CO2 emissions reduction

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