Global Ports Investments PLC has completed the preparation of information systems and processes of its terminals to comply with the Verified Gross Mass (VGM) requirement of the International Maritime Organization (IMO).
The IMO requirement that enhances container weight control will be effective as of July 1, 2016 pursuant to the amendments to the Safety of Life at Sea Convention (SOLAS) and is designed to ensure safety of vessels, as well as loading and unloading operations at ports.
The amendments provide that the weight of each packed container needs to be documented and evidenced by the relevant certificate.
The shipper is responsible for verifying the accuracy of the information. Verification will involve either weighing a packed container using certificated equipment, or weighing the cargo itself before loading into the container and adding that weight to the container’s tare weight.
To comply with the IMO requirement, the processes and operating procedures at all Global Ports’ container terminals have been modified accordingly, information systems have been adapted to accommodate the VGM electronic data exchange between the cargo owner and the port operator.
Global Ports terminals have been properly equipped to allow verification within the territory of the port. The VGM certificate will be issued to cargo owners in electronic form.
JSC First Container Terminal, LLC Moby Dik and LLC Vostochnaya Stevedoring Company have already obtained a VGM Certificate evidencing the right to render verification services from the Russian Marine Register of Shipping.
JSC Petrolesport and OJSC Ust-Luga Container Terminal have made the relevant filings with the Register and expect to obtain the VGM certificate by 20 June.
Vasily Shultsev, Director of the Commercial Department in the North-West Region at Global Ports, said: “The group does not intend to make fundamental changes to the rules of export container acceptance at Global Ports terminals.
“Containers with VGM will be accepted in accordance with our efficient operating procedures. If there is no VGM certificate, a container will be weighed at the time the car enters the port, subject to a prior verification request.”
Fact File: Global Ports Investments PLC is the leading operator of container terminals in the Russian marketi. Global Ports’ terminals are located in the Baltic and Far East Basins, key regions for foreign trade cargo flows. Global Ports operates five container terminals in Russia (Petrolesport, First Container Terminal, Ust-Luga Container Terminal and Moby Dik in the Baltics, and Vostochnaya Stevedoring Company in the Russian Far East) and two container terminals in Finland (Multi-Link Terminals Helsinki and Multi-Link Terminals Kotka). Global Ports also owns inland container terminals Yanino Logistics Park and Logistika-Terminal, both located in the vicinity of St. Petersburg, and has a 50% stake in the major oil product terminal AS Vopak E.O.S. in Estonia.