Posted on Mar 03, 2017
Class Society works with the industry to consistently enhance the safety of construction and operation of marine and offshore assets.
ABS Greater China Division (GCD) hosted its annual China Technical Committee Meeting in Shanghai, China on March 3, 2017 to discuss ABS Rule changes with more than 60 ABS China Technical Committee members from shipbuilders, owners, and designers.
Rules and Guides are the heart of a classification society. As new technologies are introduced and new challenges emerge, it is critical that ABS Rules and Guides reflect the changing needs and expectations of the marine and offshore industry as well as the required safety measures.
To respond to these needs from the rapidly evolving marine and offshore industry, ABS has kept developing and updating its Rules and Guides to enhance the safety of construction and operation of marine and offshore assets, fulfilling its mission by promoting the security of life and property and preserving the natural environment.
More than 300 ABS-proposed Rule changes have been introduced, ranging from hull, offshore, machinery, and survey, which have been fully discussed in the meeting.
“In the rule development process, ABS would like to listen what industry needs with the fast-pace technology development, and we have highly valued industry input on ABS Rule changes.” Dr. Bill Shi, ABS China Technical Committee Chairman and ABS Vice President of Global Engineering, said, “No matter how the industry evolves, safety is always the cornerstone of developing and refining ABS Rules and Standards. ABS will take advantage of its extensive international network of technical committees to further develop ABS Rules.”
During the meeting, Dr. Bill Shi also introduced a world shipping and shipbuilding outlook. He pointed out that stagnant global economic growth continues to undermine world trade growth, with no likely relief for a few years. Low oil price environment continues to depress the offshore energy sector which will take years to recover. Excess capacity will persist for most sectors to a varying degree over the next 1-2 years, slowing new order investment. Shipbuilding and shipping industry are being reshaped by consolidations and bankruptcies.
Under the new norms, opportunities and challenges coexist. ABS shared insights on the topics of industry interest such as regulatory updates and cybersafety.
ABS provided the background and timeline of environmental regulations post MEPC 70, regarding ballast water management, ship recycling, air emissions and MARPOL Annex V amendments. During the presentation and views exchange, the participants were able to understand the latest update and detailed requirements of the regulations, and ABS services to tackle the challenges, which will assist owners and operators to identify the solutions that meet regulatory requirements and their actual operational profiles.
As the maritime industry moves towards automation, instrumentation, and intelligence, cybersafety has been an increased concern of the industry. In the annual meeting, ABS introduced its extensive experience and expertise in cybersafey, especially in maritime-specific cybersafety, and the industry’s first risk-based management program ABS CyberSafety®, which can help asset owners to mitigate risks connected to cyber security and software and data integrity. ABS has conducted cyber security assessment of over 30 marine and offshore asset types. In addition, ABS has collaborated with the Maritime Security Center to lead industry partnership to determine the direction of cyber security in the maritime industry.
The presentations of hot topics sparked enthusiastic discussion. The committee members also provided much instructive feedback regarding ABS rule changes and development.
The ABS China Technical Committee Meeting is one of the key high profile meetings that ABS hosts globally every year to engage industries in ABS Rule development and modification.