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ABS, USCG and AMSA Hold Joint Seminar in Shanghai

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ABS, the United States Coast Guard (USCG) and the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) jointly hosted a seminar, titled Trading in U.S. and Australian Waters, on June 14 in Shanghai. The seminar provided participants with an update on the latest regulatory developments and served as a platform for industry stakeholders to come together to discuss today’s most pressing operational and environmental challenges. The seminar attracted more than 100 representatives, including shipowners, shipyards, designers, operators and members of the media.

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ABS Greater China Division Regional Vice President Paul Karam delivered opening remarks and welcomed all of the speakers and participants. “ABS continuously evaluates the impact of regulatory developments so that we are well prepared to assist our clients,” said Karam. He went on to add that this seminar not only serves as an effective platform to exchange views on specific regulatory and operational requirements for vessels trading in the U.S. and Australia, but also further enhances the communications between ABS and the industry, so that ABS can continue its collaborative efforts to provide the support and services that industry needs.

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Jin Wang, ABS Managing Principal Engineer of Corporate Technology, Regina Bergner, USCG representative from the Office of Operating and Environmental Standards, and Reza Vind, AMSA Manager of Operations, also presented at the seminar. 

Wang shared her insights on the increasing industry attention on smart ships and autonomous vessels. She said, “More automation, smart technologies, and greater autonomy will drive industry’s continuous evolution and shape the future of shipping. Technical review for safety and regulatory compliance is vital to ensure automated systems meet expected standards. Complex systems require integration and verification of risk management, cybersecurity and software assurance for completeness.”

Wang also delivered a presentation regarding the ABS CyberSafety ® program. As the industry’s first risk-based management tool, the ABS CyberSafety  program provides the first actionable guidance for addressing and assessing cyber-enabled systems that emphasize human, systems and environmental safety. By identifying risks and increasing awareness of and protection from cyber threats, the ABS CyberSafety program can enhance safety, minimize productivity loss and limit operational impact.

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Since the regulatory requirements on ship safety and environmental performance have become stricter, it is critical for the industry to understand the latest status of regulations and implement the right compliance solutions in a timely manner.

During the seminar, AMSA representative, Reza Vind, addressed ship risk assessments, 2016 AMSA PSC inspection statistics, and PSC deficiencies. He also provided some suggestions on PSC inspections. Reza Vind said, “The crew should be fully aware of the ship and how everything works. Before the inspection commences, all defective equipment should be disclosed.” Vind added “It is important for crew to understand what the deficiencies mean.”

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USCG representative Regina Bergner presented on U.S. pollution prevention programs, providing an overview of regulations related to sewage, garbage, air emissions and ballast water. Bergner's presentation focused on the U.S. ballast water program and the upcoming ratification of the IMO Ballast Water Convention in September 2017. 

ABS has jointly held the subject seminar with USCG and AMSA in multiple regions over the past several years. Similar seminars also took place in Japan and Korea earlier this year.