FMC launches investigation into Canada’s ballast water regulations

Chamber of Shipping > Blog > News > Local > FMC launches investigation into Canada’s ballast water regulations

The Federal Maritime Commission launched an investigation last week to determine if pending Canadian regulations governing ballast water management systems of ships in the US-Canada Great Lakes trade have a disparate effect on US-flagged vessels and constitute a Foreign Shipping Practices violation under 46 U.S.C. Chapter 423. US-based companies operating ships in the US-Canada Great Lakes trade maintain that Canadian regulations effective September 2024 impose a severe burden on their operations and put American companies and vessels at a disadvantage relative to their Canadian competitors. Interested members of the public are invited to comment on the matters that have triggered this investigation.  Comments should be submitted via the Federal eRulemaking Portal by June 21, 2024.

There are significant potential consequences for Canadian-flagged vessels calling at US ports if the Commission determines there has been a violation of the Foreign Shipping Practices provisions.  Options for offsetting sanctions include limiting Canadian-flagged vessels from calling at US ports and assessing significant fees on Canadian-flagged vessels.

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