FEPORT: Container Weighing Rules Need Clarity on National Level

Within less than six months, new SOLAS container weighing rules will come into force and there is still a lack of information and harmonization at national level in the European Union.

Therefore, the Federation of European Private Port Operators (FEPORT) has called on national authorities to develop guidelines in order to protect the efficiency of the logistics chain and avoid creating competitive distortions between member states.

“From July 1, 2016, all containers to be loaded on a vessel will need to be accompanied by a Verified Gross Mass (VGM). As of now, industry actors have released guidelines on the implementation of SOLAS requirement, but guidance from national authorities is still absent in many cases,” Jasper Nagtegaal, Chairman of the Customs and Logistics Committee, said.

“A lack of national guidelines will ultimately lead to confusion in implementation and will have an adverse impact on operations and lead to possible competitive distortion,” Nagtegaal added.

FEPORT added that it, along with its members, is “ready to cooperate with member states and with other actors in the logistics chain to elaborate national guidelines which are commonly accepted and implementable.”

SOLAS container weighing rules were adopted by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) to enhance maritime safety and reduce the dangers to containerships, their crews, and all those involved in container transport throughout the supply chain.