The ratification of the International Maritime Organization Ballast Water Management Convention is an opportunity for more business in Greece’s ship repair zone, according to the sector’s entrepreneurs. The development emerged last week as Finland signed on to the treaty, thereby raising the share of the global fleet to have accepted it to 35 percent, which means it can now be activated.
Fearnley Securities estimates that between 2017 and 2020 the owners of some 70,000 vessels must decide whether they will install ballast water management systems (BWMS) in their oceangoing ships or scrap their older ships. Other estimates raise the total amount of necessary investments due to the development to $100 billion.
It is this form of expenditure that Greek ship repair units will be seeking a share of, as they have the know-how and competitiveness for such work. A significant number of shipyards and ship repair units around Greece have already started or are about to begin promotional activities to attract such contracts. Other Greek businesses have already secured cooperation with manufacturers of BWMS equipment or are in the process of having their own systems certified.
While this news is seen as particularly positive for the ship repair industry and for Piraeus Port Authority, which is planning a dynamic participation, shipping companies, which are facing a very demanding shipping market regardless, will be unhappy about the costs involved.
The international convention will come into force in just under a year’s time, on September 8, 2017.