Shanghai is planning to establish its own fuel standard for ships in an effort to reduce harmful air emissions, reports said.
The Chinese city has proposed an anti-pollution regulation for ships, requiring vessels to burn only fuels that comply with Shanghai’s quality standards.
The Shanghai Maritime Safety Administration stated that establishing the maritime fuel standard is on the bureau’s working agenda, local media reported. Violators will be fined between RMB10,000 ($1,600) to RMB100,000 under the new regulation.
“The local maritime fuel standard will be stricter than the national one,” Zhang Xiaodong, chief of the administration’s law department, was quoted saying, without detailing on the specifications of the fuel.
The implementation of a fuel standard will help to make enforcement easier, with the Shanghai Maritime Safety Administration having the power to issue fines to shipowners and operators whose ships discharge black smoke.
The use of compliant fuel is among 13 items added to the new regulation, a stricter version compared to the one in use now, created in 1996.
Other new items include a fine of up to RMB200,000 for ships and boats caught discharging sewage into the Huangpu River or any of the city’s reservoirs.
Vessels will also be required to use electricity, or cold-ironing, while docked at the port as opposed to burning the high-sulphur bunker fuel. But port infrastructure would have to catch up with allowing ships to use the pollution-free cold-ironing technology.
In a separate development, Shanghai International Port (Group) Co (SIPG) is looking to invest in Germany’s Hamburg and Bremen ports, as it continually seeks opportunities to own or operate overseas ports, reports said.
Chen Xuyuan, chairman of SIPG, was quoted during a port conference in Hamburg that close cooperation between SIPG and the European ports of Hamburg and Bremen would be lucrative for all parties involved.
SIPG already has a 25-year franchise in Haifa, Israel, and joined the construction of Belgium’s Zeebrugge port, the country’s second largest port after Antwerp.
In China, SIPG is exclusive operator of the port of Shanghai, which is currently the world’s busiest container port with throughput of 35.29m teu in 2014.
SIPG is not alone among Chinese companies seeking investment opportunities in overseas port. In May this year, China Ocean Shipping Group (Cosco) was shortlisted as one of three bidders for a 51% stake in Greece’s Piraeus port, with the binding bids due by September.
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