Oct 23

Weekly Bulletin: Friday 27 October 2023

Welcome to this week’s Bulletin.

Following the incident in the North Sea earlier this week, where British-flagged cargo ship Verity collided with a larger vessel and sank, our thoughts are with the families and friends of all those affected by this tragic event.

The Chamber was back in Parliament on Monday at the APPG for Maritime and Ports, where three of our members showcased their actions and efforts in reducing carbon emissions to meet the industry's net-zero goals. Tuesday also saw the first meeting of the Chamber's refreshed International Trade & Tax Committee, kindly hosted by Pinsent Masons.

Elsewhere, Chamber's Policy Advisor, Elise Nyborg, joined experts at the Arctic Circle Assembly in Reykjavik, Iceland, where the IMO’s Polar Code and accelerating the 2024 heavy fuel oil ban adoption were among some of the hot topics being discussed. Find a write-up of all these meetings below.

What's new

Chamber Members present at APPG for Maritime and Ports

On Monday, three Chamber Members attended the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) to present their strategies on decarbonisation.

David Kennedy-Browne from Maersk, Nick Hey from Wightlink, and Sunit Das from Hadley Shipping were the presenters for the session. Among the attendees were parliamentarians from across the maritime industry, including former maritime minister Robert Courts MP.

The topics discussed included:

  • opportunities for reducing carbon emissions
  • future fuel demand, and
  • limitations of grid capacity.

The conversation developed on how the sector could come together to ensure messages to the Government are as clear and coordinated as possible. It also touched on the future of hydrogen as an alternative fuel and the importance of cross-departmental working to resolve issues such as the limitations of the planning system for infrastructure roll-out.

Chamber's International Trade & Tax Committee

The Chamber's recently restructured International Trade & Tax Committee (previously known as the Tax & Economics Committee) met for the first time this week. Nearly 20 people took part in the meeting kindly hosted by Pinsent Masons and chaired by Jonathan Campbell of P&O Ferries.

New Terms of Reference were agreed, noting that the purpose of the reformed Committee is to provide a forum to exchange relevant information and monitor policy and regulatory developments on international trade, tax, finance and other shipping policy matters. Members can expect to feed into and coordinate the Chamber’s position in consultations and general policy.

The Committee will oversee three Working Groups: the newly established Sustainability Reporting & Finance Working Group, the Tax Group, and the Customs Working Group. The latter currently reports to the Ferry and Cruise Panel as well as our International Trade and Tax Committee.

Members discussed their priorities about several tax and finance files, including the implementation of the OECD Pillars 1 and 2, the fast-approaching EU ETS, and the UK’s tonnage tax regime.

The next Committee meeting will take place in March 2024. Members are invited to contact Katrina Ross and Hannah Gilbert should they wish to participate in the Committee or any Working Groups.

Chamber Attends Arctic Circle Assembly in Iceland

Last week, our Policy Advisor, Elise Nyborg, joined over 2000 global ministers, diplomats, and experts at the Arctic Circle Assembly in Reykjavik, Iceland, from 19 to 21 October. The Arctic Circle Assembly is a premier forum for Arctic discussions, featuring shipping as a prominent theme.

The Assembly featured a significant UK presence, with Scotland’s Minister for Energy and the Environment, Gillian Martin, showcasing Scotland's renewable energy ambitions and calling for collaboration on green hydrogen and offshore wind with North Atlantic nations. The Environmental Audit Committee’s inquiry into the Arctic was also presented, with recommendations focusing on strengthening the IMO’s Polar Code and accelerating the 2024 heavy fuel oil ban adoption.

The Chamber has been active in recent Arctic-related inquiries, underscoring the industry’s push for sustainable practices in the region and emphasising safety in Arctic shipping. We await the Government’s response to the inquiries and will monitor the outcomes closely.

Latest member updates

Chamber members are reminded that they have exclusive access to a range of updates from the Chamber’s policy experts on a wide spectrum of issues. You can access all your resources through your member dashboard. Latest updates include: 

Taxation & Economics Committee, 27 June 2023: Minutes

If you haven't done so, don't forget to register for an account.

Upcoming Events

Maritime Labour Convention

The Chamber will be hosting an online-only training course on Monday 30 October on the Maritime Labour Convention, 2006 (MLC); how it has come to be the fourth pillar of international regulation for shipping, alongside SOLAS, MARPOL and STCW.

The course will be presented by Tim Springett and Hannah Gilbert of the Chamber.


BTA Safety Seminar

The Annual Safety Seminar of the British Tugowners Association will take place on Thursday 16 November 2023 at Insurance Hall, London.

The Seminar will examine recent incidents, discuss accident prevention, and hear from tug experts, insurers and investigators. With an audience of tug masters, pilots, marine superintendents, P&I clubs, lawyers, workboat crew, harbour masters and others, the aim is to inform, discuss and share best practice.

The day will run from 0900-1600 with lunch and refreshments provided


International Shipping Seminar

With a focus on vessel vetting, decarbonisation, sustainability, and regulatory measures, don't miss our seminar taking place on 22 November at Cavendish Square, London, 2 pm - 5 pm. More information to follow.

Free event exclusively for Chamber members


British Rig Owners' Association (BROA) Annual Dinner, Technical & Executive Committee 

The event will be held on Thursday 7th December 2023 at the International Chamber of Shipping in London, whilst the dinner will take place at the Bleeding Heart Bistro, London, EC1N 8SJ.


Chamber Annual Gala Dinner  

The UK Chamber of Shipping is delighted to confirm that its Annual Gala Dinner will be taking place on 5th February 2024 at the JW Marriott Grosvenor House London, Park Lane.

The premier black-tie event in the shipping calendar will be an opportunity to network with colleagues and celebrate recent achievements. Last year's event attracted around 855 influential guests from across the industry.


Seafarer Mental Wellbeing Lunch & Learn With Together All

Following on from two guidance documents aimed at improving the mental wellbeing of seafarers, published by the Chamber in conjunction with the trade unions, as well as webinars in 2020 and 2021, the Chamber is pleased to provide members with an opportunity to hear from Together All, an organisation dedicated to supporting those who are struggling with their mental health. Join us on 23 November.


Introduction to Shipping Course

Participants will learn from a variety of subject matter experts on regulatory, business, political, legal, employment and training in the shipping industry. Join our webinar on 4 December.


UK Chamber of Shipping Christmas drinks reception 

The UK Chamber of Shipping Christmas drinks reception will be held this year at Trinity House, from 16.45 - 18.45 on Tuesday 12th December.

We would like to say a big thank you to all our members for their support this year. The Chamber staff are looking forward to sharing a festive drink with you on 12th December.