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News: India- Updated Guidelines on Compliance with Marpol Annex VI

20 November 2020

Our listed correspondent in India, James Mackintosh, have been kind enough to provide us with the following update for ports in India, which will be of interest to many of our members.

Our Director General (DG) for shipping published Circular No.2 of 2019, available on the right, which is to be used in conjunction with IMO Resolution MEPC.259 (68). It urges compliance with MARPOL Annex VI, Regulation 14, which is applicable to all vessels calling at Indian ports. Pursuant to this, Adani ports did send out a circular, also available on the right, banning open loop scrubber systems, but this was revoked after pressure from the trade.

The present position with respect to wash water and open loop scrubber systems for vessels calling at ports on the East coast of India (ECI) and the West Coast of India (WCI) can be summarised as follows:

ECI Ports

• Kolkata, Haldia, Paradip, Gangavaram, Krishnapatnam, Kattupalli, Ennore, Chennai, Karaikal – There are no port specific (additonal) local restrictions. Vessels need to comply with International Regulations, DG Shipping Circular No.2 of 2019, which is to be read in conjunction with IMO Resolution MEPC.259 (68).

• Dhamra - Dhamra Port is located next to ecologically sensitive areas (Marine Reserve & Bhitarkanika Crocodile National Park). In view of this, usage of open loop scrubbers and wash water discharge is not permitted at Dhamra port.

• Vizag – We understand from the Harbour Master of Vizag port that the clearance from Andhra Pradesh Pollution control board are still awaited and hence use of open loop scrubbers at Vizag port waters is not currently permitted.

• Tuticorin – As per the local Port Authority, if open loop scrubbers are used, the scrubber unit must be stopped before arriving at the Tuticorin Port limit. Open loop scrubber operations are not allowed within Tuticorin port limit / anchorage, or in port during a vessel’s stay including any period of cargo operations.

WCI Ports

• Kandla - Open loop scrubbers are not allowed in Kandla at present. Vessels should either use low sulphur fuel or hybrid scrubbers in closed mode.

• Bedi, Sikka, Salaya – Sulphur content in fuel should be less than 0.5%. Vessels should either use low sulphur fuel, or hybrid scrubbers in closed mode.

• Vadinar - Release of wash water from open loop scrubbers is prohibited at Nayara facilities. All vessels calling at Nayara facilities are advised to change over to compliant fuel before entering the port limit / anchorage area.

• Mundra, JNPT, Mumbai, New Mangalore - There are no port specific (additional) restrictions. Vessels will need to comply with the International Regulations, DG Shipping Circular No.2 of 2019, which is to be used in conjunction with IMO Resolution MEPC.259 (68).

• Cochin, Magdalla, Hazira, Dahej – Vessels have been asked to follow International Regulations, DG Shipping Engineering Circular No.2 of 2019 and the above mentioned MEPC circular.

In view of the above vessel owners should expect port state control authorities in India to closely monitor and check ships, for usage of compliant fuel (with low sulphur) or use of correct scrubbers on board.

The James Mackintosh Agency network, available along ECI and WCI, is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to provide assistance and information to the club's membership. Do visit us at