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Ghana – Focus on Safety and Maritime Pollution Prevention

Members trading in Ghana should exercise vigilance during operations involving transfer of oil and other substances. Our local correspondents BUDD Ghana advised that the Ghana Maritime Authority (GMA) recently issued a shipping notice – Ghana Maritime Authority circular – dated 17 March 2021 laying out the mandatory procedures for the transfer of oil and other substances. Those are included in Annex 1 of the Shipping Notice No.017.

Any failure to meet the GMA’s requirements may result in the levying of heavy, non-negotiable fines. A list of ‘Approved Fines for Marine Pollution Violations’ can be read here; however it should be highlighted that both the violations and fine amounts may change. For example, in a November 2020 incident, the fine levied for the ‘Transfer of petroleum products without GMA approval (48HRS)’ had increased fourfold from USD 60,000.00 to USD 240,000.00.

Members are advised that all transfer operations are subject to approval by the GMA and that the GMA must be notified of any bunker operations at least 48 hours prior to transfer activity. The master of the ship will be responsible in terms of the onboard safety and pollution response measures required for the transfer operation. All crew members involved in the operation must have received relevant training and be provided with the necessary personal protective equipment prior commencement of the transfer operation.

We are grateful to BUDD Group for providing the above information.
Source: The Standard Club

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