Ballast Water Regulations and the Cost of Compliance

The Ballast Water Convention came into force on 8 September 2017, some 13 years after it was adopted at the IMO. The convention is aimed at stopping the spread of harmful aquatic organisms transferred in a vessel's ballast water. As of August 2018, 75 countries were party to the convention, representing more than 75% of global shipping tonnage. Given that more than 40,000 ships will have to install ballast water treatment systems, shipowners and operators want insight into the cost and operational implications of complying with the convention.

News & Analysis

19 Sep 2018
A predicted recovery in the next few weeks would mirror the rebound in 2016 when freight rates for VLCCs soared from about USD15,000/day to about USD64,000/day two months later. 
08 Jun 2017
Australia was instrumental in the drafting of the new ballast water convention and is the latest country to ratify the regulations.
Ballast water tank
17 May 2017
Criticism of the ballast water management convention is unfounded.
04 May 2017
Cuts to the US Coast Guard budget could affect oversight of current and future laboratories under the agency's ballast water equipment testing regime.
Jeff Lantz
24 Mar 2017
A recent update to the US Coast Guard's vessel extension list shows that the agency is holding firm on policy guidance meant to incentivise shipowners to invest in ballast water equipment.
10 Mar 2017
Just six months remain until the IMO's Ballast Water management Convention comes into force, and dry bulk owners are getting nervous.


Power wielded by government regulators over the environmental issues to be discussed at MEPC 71 will be justified if shipowner investments can tackle the problems.