Photo credit: IMO
South Africa has become the fifth State to ratify or accede to the 2010 HNS Protocol, bringing this important treaty one step closer to entering into force.
The Minister of Transport for South Africa, Mr Fikile April Mbalula, deposited an instrument of accession with the Secretary-General of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) on 15 July 2019, whilst visiting the IMO Headquarters for the 122nd session of the IMO Council.
South Africa joins Canada, Denmark, Norway and Turkey, which have already deposited instruments of ratification to the Protocol.
Amongst the criteria for the entry into force of the 2010 HNS Convention, at least 12 States are required to ratify or accede to the Protocol, four of which must each have a merchant shipping fleet of no less than 2 million units of gross tonnage. That unit of tonnage has already been achieved with these five Contracting States.
A number of other States have reported significant progress towards ratification in recent months and the IOPC Funds are therefore very hopeful that further instruments will be deposited in the near future.
The IOPC Funds have been given the role of carrying out the tasks necessary to set up the International Hazardous and Noxious Substances Fund (HNS Fund) and of making preparations for the first session of the HNS Assembly. The 1992 Fund Secretariat also remains available to work with IMO and support States in their efforts to prepare for ratification or accession to the HNS Convention as well as industry stakeholders on technical issues. For further information please visit www.hnsconvention.org.