Brussels, 23rd April 2007. In a joint letter to European transport ministers, Seas At Risk and WWF are calling on those EU states that have not done so to ratify the AFS Convention and finally bring into force global regulations banning the use of TBT-based antifouling paints.

Brussels, 23rd April 2007. In a joint letter to European transport ministers, Seas At Risk and WWF are calling on those EU states that have not done so to ratify the AFS Convention and finally bring into force global regulations banning the use of TBT-based antifouling paints.

The AFS (Antifouling System) Convention was negotiated and adopted six years ago, yet fifteen EU states have still not ratified. The Convention will come into force one year after 25 states representing at least 25% of the world’s shipping tonnage have ratified; at present 23 states representing a little over 17% of tonnage have signed up. Ratification by Malta and just three other EU states would meet the tonnage requirement and bring the Convention into force.

Transport ministers are also being asked about national preparations for implementation and enforcement of Regulation (EC) No. 782/2003; under this regulation it will, after 1st January 2008, be an offence for any ship visiting an EU port to have an active TBT-based antifouling coating present on its hull. All EU flagged vessels and all other vessels visiting EU ports should be TBT-free by this date (other vessels will only be covered when the AFS Convention enters into force), but the regulation’s effectiveness will depend on the rigor with which national enforcement takes place.

Current status of AFS Convention ratifications and a full list of EU states that have not yet ratified (1/4/07).
Joint Seas At Risk / WWF letter to the Transport Ministers of the UK, Belgium, Malta, Italy, Germany and the Netherlands regarding non-ratification of the AFS Convention and enforcement of Regulation (EC) 782/2003 (20/4/07).
Joint Seas At Risk / WWF letter to the Transport Ministers of the other EU Member States regarding national preparations for enforcement of Regulation (EC) 782/2003 (20/4/07).

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