IBIA Annual Convention 2019
With the global 0.50% sulphur cap just weeks away, the IBIA Annual Convention 2019 took place at the historical Çırağan Palace Kempinski in Istanbul. We gathered in this unique and historically significant city that straddles two continents across an important waterway at a time when our industry is undergoing significant historical changes for the benefit of human health and the environment. The transition to the global low-sulphur regime is underway and we gathered to examine how to bridge the gap to IMO 2020.
The IBIA Annual Convention 2019 brought together over 260 stakeholders from across the world. Delegates from 25 countries, including bunker buyers/consumers, bunker providers (oil majors, independent suppliers, traders), regulators, various service providers and consultants came to forge connections, exchange views, educate and prepare for the changes ahead.
So what did we learn?
The IMO has put in place a truly comprehensive set of 2020-related guidelines for all stakeholders, helping ships to prepare and ensuring that control mechanisms are in place to deter non-compliance. Industry has also been working hard to provide guidance on the practical aspects of dealing with new fuel blends. These aspects were covered during the opening session of our Convention which heard from Edmund Hughes, Head, Air Pollution and Energy Efficiency at the IMO’s Marine Environment Division and from IBIA Board Member Patrick Holloway, a partner in the law firm Webber Wentzel. Also speaking in this session, IBIA’s Director, Unni Einemo stressed that while enforcement is up to Annex VI signatory states, compliance is up to the industry, adding that industry must not be discouraged from complying even if enforcement may be weak in some parts of the world. She also stressed the need for stakeholders to support each other in seeking compliance through communication, a pragmatic approach and a cooperative spirit.
IBIA’s Annual Convention also examined the technical, commercial and legal consequences of IMO 2020 with input from a range of leading industry experts, and about general industry preparedness from a stellar line-up of industry leaders from the supply and shipping side. There were also several presenters focusing on how we can tackle the increasing pressure to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, which will require even bigger changes than the 0.50% sulphur limit.
Is the industry ready for 2020? Judging from the messages coming from most industry stakeholders at our Convention, preparations have been made and many are just waiting for the final push during November and December.
Our sincere thanks go to everyone who contributed to making this IBIA Annual Convention a success, in particular our host the Turkish Chamber of Shipping, our sponsors, (ISTANBULBUNKER2020, Peninsula, BMS United, Asmira, Terpel, Med Petroleum, Cockett Group, Zeos Shipping, Argus, Turkuaz) our media partners (World Bunkering, Ship & Bunker) and Media sponsors (Allaboutshipping, Argus, Petrospot, Manifold Times, Deniz Ticareti, Virahaber).
The IBIA Annual Convention 2019 was the most successful IBIA Convention yet with record attendance and a high calibre of speakers. Apart from knowledge and networking opportunities, the IBIA Annual Convention offered its 260 delegates the unique opportunity to explore Istanbul with a private boat trip on the Bosphorus and a private guided tour of the iconic Hagia Sophia.
IBIA aspires to represent all stakeholders in the global bunker industry from well to wake and to be a voice of reason for the sector at the IMO and elsewhere. One of our aims is to bring various stakeholders together to learn from each other and increase mutual understanding and cooperation. We all need to pull in the same direction to succeed in the transition to the global low-sulphur regime, and work together to shape our future and bring about positive change.