Applicability: service suppliers, shipyards and BWMS manufacturers.

Proposed amendments by the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) to its Ballast Water Management (BWM) Convention regulation E-1 are expected to come into force in October 2021. These amendments mandate the commissioning testing of ballast water management systems (BWMS) during installation surveys. 
Drafted at the IMO’s MEPC 74 meeting, the amendments (at time of writing) are expected to be adopted at MEPC 75 in November 2020.
Flag Administrations are likely to be encouraged to enforce early implementation. Some already mandate commissioning testing, such as Australia, Cyprus, Panama and Singapore. 
Also expected to be adopted at MEPC 75 are drafted amendments, by the IMO PPR 7 sub-committee, to BWM.2/Circ.70 – ‘Guidance for the commissioning testing of ballast water management systems’. These include a requirement that “the collection and analysis of the representative samples should be independent of the BWMS manufacturer or supplier and to the satisfaction of the Administration”.
Ahead of these changes to the regulatory framework, Lloyd’s Register has included a new category, Commissioning Testing of Ballast Water Management Systems (BWMS), into its ‘Procedures for Approval of Service Suppliers’.

Where the vessel’s Flag Administration has mandated the application of BWM.2/Circ.70/Rev.1 after it is adopted at MEPC 75, it is anticipated that Lloyd’s Register will only accept commissioning testing of BWMS done by an approved service supplier.

All companies wishing to become recognised by Lloyd’s Register, as service suppliers providing BWMS commissioning testing, are encouraged to apply for approval, and should contact their local Lloyd’s Register office.