The discussion focused on the challenges of the sulphur cap, noting that shipowners are naturally focused on the cost of compliance; Although the cost is a necessary conversation, this conversation is to be discussed by fuel suppliers, carriers, and their customers. The cost is a commercial decision that companies have to focus on.
In the meantime, John Butler, President & CEO of the World Shipping Council referred to reports stating that some nations may not comply with the regulation; For instance, India has reported that they still consider complying with IMO's regulation.
Recent reports suggesting that some nations might not fully implement the new rules are disturbing
... Butler quoted.
He called all the countries that think of not implementing with the regulation to exclude this plan and fulfill their enforcement responsibilities as of January 1, 2020, adding 'we encourage the IMO to remind member states of their commitments.'
In addition, Trident Alliance has also expressed concerns noting that it is essential for authorities to fully and effectively enforce the regulations if fair competition is to be maintained, and to protect environmental interests.
Trident Alliance Chair, Roger Strevens stated
The only surefire way to successfully implement the new global sulphur cap is follow the regulations to the letter. Any local deviations from this would create unfair competition and may lead to non-compliance on a wider scale. Furthermore, it is extremely unhelpful to make such decisions so late in the day given the expense and effort the industry has already expended in preparing.
Gard's Sammy Smallbone has provided recommendations for managing the transition where the strategy is to use conventional compliant fuel, that is to transition from HSFO to a low sulphur fuel oil or distillate.