1. DGS Engineering Circular No. 32 of 2020 provides that any Indian ship requiring dispensation from the fitment of Ballast Water Management System (BWMS) meeting Regulation D-2 till the time India ratifies the BWM Convention and Rules are implemented, to apply to the Administration with an undertaking that during the period of dispensation, the ship will always remain on Indian coast.
2. In order to prevent delays in dealing with such requests, Indian Administration, vide Circular No. 16 of 2022 (addendum 1 to DGS Engineering Circular No. 32 of 2020), has now permitted GOI authorized ROs to issue Statement of Compliance (SOC) to ships operating on Indian coast and intending to fit BWMS only after India accedes to the Convention, subject to the condition that the vessel meets all other requirements of BWM Convention, including discharging ballast water and meeting Regulation D-1 of the BWM Convention.
3. Based on above, on satisfactory survey, SOC may be issued to Indian ships not fitted with BWMS (though required to be fitted with BWMS meeting Regulation D-2 in accordance with BWM Convention), provided that a declaration is submitted that the vessel will remain on Indian coast.
4. The SOC will be valid for a period of five (5) years or earlier, which will apply when India ratifies the Convention, Rules are framed, and requirements related to BWMS, if any, are imposed.
5. Further, while issuing such an SOC to any Indian ship which is engaged in International voyage, following condition will be included in the SOC – “The Vessel shall operate along the Indian Coast only”.
6. Foreign flagged ships operating along the Indian coast or ports or anchorages with license granted by the Indian Administration, may be granted dispensation from the fitment of BWMS meeting Regulation D-2 of the BWM Convention for the period of license, provided that following conditions are fulfilled:
a. The Recognized Organization has confirmed that all ballast water and sediments are removed prior to taking in or discharging Ballast Water along the Indian coast; and
b. Such a dispensation is granted by the Flag State of the concerned foreign flagged ship and informed to IMO on GISIS as per BWM Convention requirements.
7. Ship Owners/ operators and masters are advised to be guided by above.
This Technical Circular and the material contained in it is provided only for the purpose of supplying current information to the reader and not as an advice to be relied upon by any person. While we have taken utmost care to be as factual as possible, readers/ users are advised to verify the exact text and content of the Regulation from the original source/ issuing Authority.