Specifically, the two Marine Notices are:

  1. No. 8 of 2019, to advise of the global implementation of the MARPOL Annex VI limit of 0.50 mass per cent concentration (0.50% m/m) sulphur content in fuel oil, for all ships, from 1 January 2020;
  2. No. 9 of 2019, which provides a standard format for reporting fuel oil non-availability as provided in regulation 18.2.4 of MARPOL Annex VI that may be used to document if a ship is unable to obtain compliant fuel oil.

According to SAMSA, South Africa accepts all types of approved scrubbers, until further notice.

In addition, South Africa has no restrictions on ships using LNG or Marine Biofuels when entering South African waters.

In the meantime, the International Bunker Industry Association (IBIA) had expressed confidence that compliant fuel would be available in South African ports by January 1st 2020.

According to Marine Notice 9, it highlights what has to be done, when a vessel is found to be non-compliant with IMO's regulations. If not compliant, SAMSA can require the vessel to:

  1. Present a record of the actions taken to attempt to achieve compliance;
  2. Provide evidence that it attempted to purchase compliant fuel oil in accordance with its voyage plan and, if it was not made available where planned, that attempts were made to locate alternative sources for such fuel oil and that despite best efforts to obtain compliant fuel oil, no such fuel oil was made available for purchase.

SAMSA reported that it would give consideration to actions taken to minimize the amount of excess emissions, such as purchase of the next cleanest fuel oil possible. Also, it would not consider the cost of compliant fuel oil to be a valid basis for claiming nonavailability of  0.50% m/m fuel oil.

SAMSA's decision on supporting open loop scrubbers, was applauded by CSA 2020.

As CSA stated

The Clean Shipping Alliance 2020 has welcomed the decision by the South African Maritime Safety Authority to accept all types of approved exhaust gas cleaning systems for use in its territorial waters.

Clean Shipping Alliance 2020 received the GREEN4SEA Clean Shipping Award on March 12, 2019 for representing a group of leading companies that have taken efforts through significant investments in research and analysis, funding and committing resources to comply with 2020 fuel requirements through the development and use of Exhaust Gas Cleaning Systems (EGCS).