Will Finland fire ballast gun?
Finland looks set to be the final signature needed to put the IMO Ballast Water Convention into effect after the Finnish Government proposed yesterday that the President of the Republic adopt the convention. It was also proposed that the President would ratify acts that lay down the provisions on the entry into force of the convention. The acts will become effective only after the convention has entered into force in Finland and internationally. After Peru’s signature earlier this month, the convention was left just 0.13% short of the 35% target for gross tonnage. While the figures are subject to constant change due to new deliveries, scrappings and flag changes, Finland is estimated to have around 0.14% of the world fleet by gross tonnage. If the Finnish president accepts the government’s proposal and deposits the necessary ratification to the IMO and assuming that the figure is as expected, the convention would enter into force next summer, 12 months after the ratification. Under the present rollout programme approved by the IMO, there is a five year period for retrofitting existing ships depending upon age which would mean that the retrofit programme would last until 2022. However, the shipping industry led by Liberia has suggested that this be extended due to lack of sufficient drydock capacity.