Business Environment Council Responses to Government’s Consultation on Proposal to Mandate Ocean-going Vessels and River Trade Vessels to Use Compliant Fuel within Hong Kong Waters

Hong Kong, 26 April 2017 – Business Environment Council Limited 商界環保協會有限公司 (“BEC”) welcomes the Hong Kong SAR Government’s proposal to mandate Ocean-going Vessels and River Trade Vessels to use fuel with sulphur content not exceeding 0.5% when entering Hong Kong waters as of 1 January 2019. BEC has made a submission to the Environmental Protection Department on 26 April 2017 in response to the public consultation.

BEC recognises that the proposal will align Hong Kong’s regulations with the requirements of the Pearl River Delta Domestic Emissions Control Area (PRD DECA). BEC is supportive of regional regulatory consistency, which avoids hindering competitiveness as well as supports operational ease for marine vessels.

BEC is keen to see Hong Kong continue to take a leading role in shipping emission reductions, working across the PRD to develop a timeline to implement even higher emission standards, taking into account regional fuel supply considerations and implications for business competitiveness. In this submission, BEC also encourages the Government to closely align with existing requirements and practices of Emission Control Areas (ECAs) in Europe and North America under MARPOL Annex VI1 regarding the enforcement provisions on record-keeping and documentation on board vessels.

All in all, BEC sees the introduction of higher emission standards is important in terms of improving air quality and Hong Kong’s overall liveability. As Hong Kong took the lead in controlling sulphur emissions from the marine sector several years ago, BEC believes that the DECA will support the competitiveness of Hong Kong’s shipping and shipping-related industries in the PRD.

Full version of BEC’s submission can be accessed at BEC’s website at:

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(English version only)

[1] The Baltic Sea, North Sea, North American, and United States Caribbean Sea ECAs.