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Monday, September 24, 2018

Report from INTERTANKO Council Meeting

INTERTANKO Chairman Stephen van Dyck led top-level policy discussions at the Autumn Council Meeting held this week in London.  Ship owners, Chairmen / CEOs and senior executives of leading shipping companies deliberated on several key issues on the Association's agenda.  INTERTANKO's  Executive Committee had met the previous day to discuss major tanker industry policy matters and corporate affairs.


The Council approved 14 membership applications (see table below for details) with 88 tankers of 5.16m dwt.  With these additions, the total INTERTANKO membership is now some 75% of the world independent tanker fleet.  In addition, 10 new associate membership applications were approved.


Among the key issues discussed were information sharing, air emissions,  ship vetting and the Human Element Committee, as well as membership criteria and best practice policies.


Information Sharing / IACS Early Warning System (EWS)


Currently, classification societies run their own internal Early Warning Systems (EWSs) but the data received is kept confidential within and there is no exchange of such information between classification societies.  Consequently, the International Association of Classification Societies (IACS) presented a proposal for a new IACS EWS that would adopt both a reactive and a proactive reporting scheme and which would (1) report the information for action by an IACS Society involved with the ship and her sisters, and (2) produce recommendations for action for IACS to take collectively, where possible.


However, IACS also stated that the new EWS would only function if ship owners would agree to the circulation of information the classification society has on their ships to the other classification societies. Therefore, IACS proposed a "Confidentiality Clause" that they would wish to see added to their Rules and that would need to be endorsed/approved by ship owners. This clause would authorise the release of information on serious ship failures and engine room and equipment failures, including the name of the ship and its IMO number, to enable such useful information to be shared and utilised to facilitate the proper working of IACS' Early Warning System (which is aimed at enabling (i) "sister" or similar ships to avoid similar problems and (ii) the shipping industry generally to learn from failures and mistakes).


INTERTANKO has stressed that from the liability perspective it is important that sufficient safeguards are built into the EWS itself, and that it would be helpful if the ship owner clients of the IACS member were to be advised when information was being considered for passing to the EWS. An amendment to the clause has been proposed by INTERTANKO's Documentary Committee to reflect this.


The Council gave its broad acceptance of the principle of EWS, with the understanding that the Secretariat will further discuss with, and obtain more information from, IACS with a specific proposal being presented to the next Council Meeting in Houston. 


Air Emissions


The Secretariat provided the Council with a comprehensive and detailed report in its Agenda Notes, and a verbal report by Managing Director Dr. Peter Swift on the principles behind the INTERTANKO position, the Association's approach to the revision process of MARPOL Annex VI, as well as the IMO regulatory process and timescales. Click here for a copy of the presentation that accompanied the verbal report.


INTERTANKO has developed an approach to the revision of MARPOL Annex VI based on the principles agreed by the Executive Committee during its recent meetings. The main purpose of the INTERTANKO submission to the IMO Working Group is to present issues that merit further discussion (by the IMO Working Group) when considering the revision of Annex VI of MARPOL. INTERTANKO believes that it is important that there is open debate at the international level on the subject of how best to meet rapidly changing expectations for lower ship emissions, and that there should be full and frank discussion of the various solutions possible.


Dr Swift presented the IMO timetable below, and  Joe Angelo, INTERTANKO Director of Regulatory Affairs explained to the Council the IMO regulatory process in detail.


          Intersessional Meeting (November 13-17 2006) – discussion of key issues and draft proposals

          BLG 11 (April 2007) – finalise draft proposals for revised Annex VI, the NOx Code and related Guidelines

          MEPC 56 (July 2007) & MEPC 57 (March 2008) - consider and approve(?) the revised texts

          Target date for Entry in to Force: 2010


Dr Swift related the above timetable with future INTERTANKO meetings at all levels - Regional Panels, Committees, Executive Committee and Council.


Ship Vetting


Capt Bob Bishop, CEO of V.Ships and Chairman of the Vetting Committee, gave a presentation on the Vetting Committee's work programme including information on the activities of its seven Working Groups. Click here for a copy of the presentation.


The Council approved the revised Terms of Reference of the Vetting Committee, and has agreed the proposed Tanker Officer Training Scheme initiative, which is being established to ensure that tanker officers are experienced and competent. Capt Bishop also encouraged members to use the Terminal Vetting Database, the benchmarking facilities, and vetting inspector information. 


Human Element Committee


Capt Howard Snaith, Secretary to the newly established Human Element Committee (HEC), gave a brief report on the progress of the identification of area and scope of work.  The Terms of Reference of the HEC were approved by the Council.


Membership Criteria / Best Practice Policies


The Council reviewed and endorsed the list of membership criteria and best policies of the Association.  In particular, the Council supported further development in the areas of training and cadetships.


In an effort to increase the number of qualified competent officers at sea and to safeguard the tanker industry of the future, INTERTANKO members agree to consider that, as part of a planned programme for officer training, they will commit to enlisting Apprentice Officers (Cadets), for each vessel operated, where suitable certified cabin space exists onboard the vessel to accommodate them, and where it is possible to acquire young capable Cadet Officers of a suitably qualified nature.


In addition, recognising the trend in today's practice of restrictions in accommodation by shipyards, INTERTANKO members further agree to consider that newbuildings should include suitable certified cabin space for cadets as part of any newbuilding specification. INTERTANKO will, (in parallel) endeavour to ensure that the Tripartite Forum (owners, shipbuilders and class) will include cadet berth availability in their work programme with the aim that classification societies make cadet berths a mandatory requirement in standard ship design.


U.S. issues


The Council discussed INTERTANKO policy on several U.S. issues where regional regulation threatens to usurp federal and international regulation.



New Members – Approved




No. of tankers

Total DWT

Brødrene Klovning Shipping AS




China Shipping (Group) Company





Elmira Shipping & Trading SA




Emarat Maritime LLC




Genel Denizcilik Nakliyati AS / Geden Line





HART Shipping Corp.




Mantinia Shipping Company SA




Maritime Performances BV

The Netherlands




Newfront Shipping S.A.




Olympic Gulf Tankers Co. Ltd.




Omega Navigation Enterprises Inc





Sinotrans Shipping Ltd.

Hong Kong



TESMA (India) Pvt. Ltd.




Top Tankers SA









New Associate Members - Approved


Australian Maritime College


B.V. United Gas Carriers "Unigas Int'l"


Irving Oil Limited

New Brunswick

Keppel Shipyard Limited


Ship Equip AS


Vietnam Petroleum Transport Joint-Stock Company


St. James's Chartering Ltd.


Petrochina International (London) Co. Ltd.


Bose & Mitra & Co.


Caribbean World Wide Shipping Services Agency S.A.



New Executive Committee Member


Mr. Suay Umut, President and Owner of Dunya Denizcilik ve Ticaret A.S. (Dunya Shipping), Turkey, is elected by the Council as new member of the Executive Committee.


The next Council meeting will take place in Houston on 26-27 March 2007, and will be organised in conjunction with the Houston Tanker Event.


Contact: Minerva Alfonso