Critical factors drive Ballast Water Control System growth after IMO ratification

NEWCASTLE-UPON-TYNE, UK, SEPT 29, 2016: RATIFICATION of the IMO’s Ballast Water Management (BWM) convention has been welcomed by CMR Group, which sees the move as a boost for system and equipment manufacturers.

The marine electrical wiring control and instrumentation specialist was commenting after Finland ratified the convention, which saw the total tonnage of contracting states surpass the 35% mark.

The countdown has now started for ship owners and managers says CMR, as the convention comes into effect from September 2017.

Marine vessels are required to manage their ballast water and sediments to try to contain the spread of invasive species of microorganisms into non-indigenous environments, causing a major threat to marine ecosystems.

Tens of thousands of existing vessels worldwide, including an estimated 5,000 oil tankers, will need to be retro-fitted with BWTS to ensure compliance, CMR believes.

New ship builders will also be required to make preparations to identify the options for installing systems in original specifications – both within the construction programme or through retrofitting. 

According to the IMO, ratification will effect a level playing field for international shipping, providing ‘clear and robust standards for the management of ballast water on ships’.

Ian Hamilton, CMR’s BWTS project leader, says equipment manufacturers who have systems in place or under development, will be boosted by this news but understanding the concerns of OEMs will be critical.

“Ratification will see thousands of maritime vessels requiring a BWT system to be installed between now and 2020, driving sales demand.

“However, all these systems will need control panel and monitoring systems to ensure proper performance and limit time consuming and costly damage to components.

“The capacity to build and supply within 2 – 4 weeks at a competitive price and backed up by engineering support are now the key drivers for successful suppliers to the sector. From a CMR perspective, our 'Goldfinch' methodology will allow us to achieve our customers' stretch goals."

“A global reach and marine experience will also be important factors in securing sales.”

Ian Hamilton adds that shared partnerships will remain important to expanding BWTS OEMs’ offering and new business potential.

“After all, if it’s beneficial for one, it surely makes sense for others to work alongside manufacturers like us, who have a global reach in marine and cost effective, rapid lead time capabilities.”

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