GSA and GMA holds stakeholder seminar on IMO 2020 sulphur cap regulations

The Ghana Shippers’ Authority (GSA) in collaboration with the Ghana Maritime Authority (GMA) has organised a one-day seminar to sensitize shippers on the International Maritime Organization (IMO) 2020 Sulphur Cap Regulations.

The 2020 Sulphur Cap is a regulation set by the IMO to enforce a new 0.5 percent global sulphur cap on fuel content from January 1, 2020, lowering from the present 3.5 percent limit Sulphur emissions from ships.The global fuel sulphur cap is part of the IMO’s response to heightening environmental concerns, contributed in part by harmful emissions from ships.

The Chief Director of the Ministry of Transport, Mrs. Mabel Sagoe and Chairperson of the seminar stated that the purpose for the seminar is to create awareness amongst shippers in Ghana in respect of the implementation of the IMO 2020 Sulphur Cap regulations and its impact on shipping service providers in relation to technical and commercial transaction.

In an address, the Chief Executive of the GSA, Ms. Benonita Bismarck said the joint collaborative steps that have been taken by the GSA and GMA should provide an appreciable level of awareness among players in the shipping industry regarding this new policy directive by the IMO. She gave the assurance that the sensitization will be done in the various regions to educate stakeholders of the shipping and logistics industry.

The Deputy Director General for Operations of the GMA, Mr. Daniel Appianin in his remarks said that the decision to further control emissions from Ships came in October 2016 when the IMO’s Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) set January 1, 2020 as the implementation date for a significant reduction in the Sulphur content of the fuel oil used onboard ships to a global Sulphur limit of 0.50 percent mass by mass(m/m).

A presentation was made by the Senior Freight and Logistics Officer of the GSA, Mr. Abdul Haki Bashiru the 2020 IMO Sulphur cap regulations and its implications on the cost of shipping, the local industry and the industry as a whole.

He indicated that for the shipping lines to meet the compliance, they will incur some cost and therefore some have decided on a recovery mechanism so it does not have an unbearable effect on their customers.

The seminar saw significant participants from various stakeholders including Ghana Institute Freight Forwarders (GIFF), Ghana Union of Traders Associations (GUTA), Custom Brokers Associations of Ghana (CUBAG) and members of the Greater Accra Regional Shipper Committee (GARSC) among others.