On January 1, 2017, the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China is enforcing the new Merchant Shipping (Control of Harmful Anti-Fouling Systems on Ships) Regulation, CAP 413N, to implement the International Convention on the Control of Harmful Anti-Fouling Systems on Ships 2001, GAC informed.
The regulation is applicable to all Hong Kong registered ships wherever they might be, foreign ships within Hong Kong waters, as well as local vessels as defined in the Merchant Shipping (Local Vessels) Ordinance, CAP 548.
The measure prohibits the use of organotin compounds that act as biocides in the anti-fouling systems of ships for the protection of the marine environment.
For ships engaged in international voyage, a valid International Anti-Fouling System Certificate should be carried on board ships of 400 gross tonnage or above.
For ships having a length of 24 meters or more but less than 400 gross tons, which are engaged in international voyage, no certification is needed but the ship is required to carry on board a declaration signed by the owner of the ship or his authorized agent to declare that the ship’s anti-fouling system complies with the regulation.
Shipowners, operators and coxswains of local vessels are required to observe and comply with the requirements of the regulation, according to GAC.