Don’t be complacent about SOLAS, says BIFA

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BIFA has warned the freight forwarding industry to avoid being complacent about new SOLAS rules, after the IMO suggested some leniency would apply for the first three months.

Don’t be complacent about SOLAS, says BIFAThe IMO said that there would be a ‘practical and pragmatic’ implementation of the rules for the first three months – the rules come into force on 1st July 2016. The new weighing rules will mean that shipping lines will have to report the verified gross mass (VGM) of every container being shipped.

Robert Keen, director general of BIFA, said that international trade should not “allow this grace period to shape its plans in regards to complying with the new rules.”

“BIFA continues to urge its members to talk to their customers and the shipping lines and ports they use to make sure that the containers they ship after July 1 are compliant with the new rules,” he said. “The IMO circular advising administrations and port state control authorities to take a “practical and pragmatic approach” in enforcing the new rules, for a period of three months immediately following 1 July 2016, should help ensure that containers that are loaded before that date, but transhipped on or after that date, reach their final port of discharge without a verified gross mass.”

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