USD 100 Billion for Proper Implementation of New BWT Systems


To install new ballast water treatment systems as required by law for compliance with the Ballast Water Management (BWM) Convention, an estimated USD 100 Billion will have to be spent by the global shipping industry.

The International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) called on shipowners, equipment managers and governments for their cooperation in the proper implementation of BWM. The move will go into effect on Friday.

Esben Poulsson, Chairman of the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) said, “We need to ensure, so far as practicable, that the systems installed on ships will indeed be fit for purpose in all known operating conditions worldwide.  We are therefore advising shipping companies that they should make it clear to equipment manufacturers they will only consider fitting treatment systems which have been certified in accordance with the revised IMO type-approval standards adopted in 2016, even though this is not yet a mandatory requirement.”

The IMO decided to adjust the implementation dates of the Convention in July, so that ships constructed before 8 September will not be required to install treatment systems until the date of their first International Oil Pollution Prevention (IOPP) renewal survey after 8 September 2019. However, ships built after the said date will have to complain delivery with the BWM Convention.

Paulsson stressed, “We acknowledge the pragmatic approach to implementation taken by IMO Member States who accepted the arguments made by ICS and other industry associations that there is little logic, from an environmental protection standpoint, in requiring thousands of ships to comply until they can be fitted with systems that have been approved under the more stringent standards.”

He went on to say, “Shipowners must make full use of this additional time to identify and invest in far more robust technology to the benefit of the environment. And in view of the significant concessions that IMO has now made in response to the industry’s representations, shipping companies should not anticipate any further relaxation to the implementation schedule.”