INTERTANKO European Panel meets in Rome
INTERTANKO’s European Panel met on 27-28 September at the offices of the Italian Shipowners Association, Confitarma. Chaired by Tommy Olofsen of OSM Thome, Members attending the meeting were given the opportunity to engage on a range of priority issues including the Nigeria tax review exercise, the European Union’s Emissions Trading System (EU ETS), Russian sanctions and the recommendations from INTERTANKO’s recent seafarers’ survey.
Following an update on INTERTANKO activities, the Panel was given an overview of OCIMF’s priority issues by Kevin Coelho, OCIMF Nautical Advisor. OCIMF’s presentation included an update on human-centric design on mooring arrangements, sparking a discussion with Members on new mooring technologies.
A switch in focus to the regional issues and an update on EU developments by ADS Insight allowed Members to share their concerns about the increasingly complex legislation from Brussels. While most comments focused on the outstanding questions and lack of clarity associated with the EU ETS, other legislative initiatives such as the Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD) drew concerns regarding the pace of regulatory development and the burden on shipping companies. This prompted the proposal to hold the Panel’s next meeting in Brussels, with a view to allow Members to engage directly with Commission officials on the practical challenges caused by the increasing regulatory burden.
Having set the scene and provided the background to the EU ETS, INTERTANKO’s Legal Counsel, Selena Challacombe, provided Members with an overview of the charterparty implications associated with the introduction of the EU ETS. Fresh from discussing the issue in INTERTANKO’s Documentary Committee, Challacombe ran through some of the conflicting charterparty clauses in existence, questions over payments in advance or arrears and rights of suspension.
The Panel’s second day commenced with opening remarks by Confitarma’s Managing Director, Luca Sisto, who took the opportunity to welcome INTERTANKO to Rome and share his appreciation for the close collaboration and relations between the two ship owner associations. Mr Olofsen, speaking on behalf of the Members in attendance, extended thanks and appreciation to Mr Sisto and his team at Confitarma for ensuring a smooth and successful meeting in the wonderful surroundings of the Confitarma offices. Olofsen also took the opportunity to thank Paolo d’Amico, INTERTANKO Chairman and Chairman of d’Amico Società di Navigazione, for kindly hosting a convivial dinner for all Members attending the Panel meeting.
Panel members provided their thoughts and support for the recommendations from INTERTANKO’s seafarer questionnaire, presented by INTERTANKO’s Marine Director, Phil Belcher, particularly on the positive steps being considered for allowing seafarers to gain seatime. The subject of CSRD was considered again following an update on INTERTANKO’s environmental work. This time CSRD was discussed in the context of the pending review and revision of INTERTANKO’s ESG reporting guidance. The more familiar regulatory framework associated with the IMO was focused on during the environmental update which spanned developments led by INTERTANKO on the revision of the ballast water management Convention through to emerging issues such as underwater radiated noise.
INTERTANKO’s activity on the Nigerian tax review exercise was summarised by Selena Challacombe, allowing Panel members to consider INTERTANKO’s ongoing engagement with the Nigerian Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS).
Challacombe also provided a useful recap and update on the implementation of Russian sanctions, adding that additional guidance has recently been provided by the Insurance and Legal Committee. Issues associated with the implementation of the Russian sanctions and the threat to shipping in the Black Sea were also covered in the security update provided by Dr Belcher.
Insurance and Legal Committee meets in Rome
INTERTANKO’s Insurance and Legal Committee met on 27 September under the Chairmanship of Ingela Tengelin, Stena Bulk AB. The meeting was hosted by the Italian Shipowners Association, Confitarma at their office in Rome.
The meeting started with a discussion on the Nigeria Tax Compliance Review Exercise and the position taken by INTERTANKO that the exercise should be dispensed with. The Committee confirmed their support of this position and were provided with an update on INTERTANKO’s exchanges with the Nigerian Federal Inland Revenue Services (FIRS), industry collaboration and exploration of other channels of communications with the Nigerian government.
The Committee was also provided with updates on INTERTANKO’s activities in relation to Russian sanctions, ESG reporting and an update on the IMO Legal Committee 110, which took place in March. An update on EU developments in relation to the Ship Source Pollution Directive and Environmental Crimes Directive were also provided by ADS Insight.
The Committee will meet in London in Spring 2024.
Human Element in Shipping Committee meets in Rome
On 26 September, the 36th session of the Human Element in Shipping Committee was held in Rome, hosted by the Italian Shipowners Association, Confitarma.
Chaired by Dimitris Fokas of Maran Tankers, the Committee held discussions on a broad range of issues related to the employment, training and welfare of seafarers.
Minutes from the meeting will be made available shortly.