The final Law Update of 2022 is here, and it’s packed full of articles. The double edition features two focus areas, first is a spotlight on Energy and Resources and second we feature a collection of articles on Transport and Logistics. The developments occurring in these sectors in the MENA region are unprecedented and our lawyers cover vast themes for you.
The Energy and Resources focus features topics such as diversifying energy resources, solar PV, mining in the Middle East, renewable energy and green hydrogen. From a transport perspective, we draw attention to the Bahrain metro project, discuss the challenges and remedies associated with the repossession of an aircraft, and there is advice on what to consider should a party vary the terms of a shipping contract.
This edition navigates you through updates from across jurisdictions such as, Oman, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Iraq, Qatar, and the UAE. Each article is timely and provides insights into legal issues and cases that are affecting these sectors across the region.Read the full edition
Please be advised that the Port of Fujairah recently issued a notice banning the use of open-loop scrubbers in port waters. Notice to Mariners No. 252, issued by the Harbour Master, states:
“[The] Port of Fujairah has decided to ban the use of open-loop scrubbers in its waters. Ships will have to use compliant fuel once the IMO 2020 sulphur cap comes into force.”
The International Maritime Organisation (IMO) will cap the permitted sulphur content in marine fuels at 0.5% from 1 January 2020, down from the current 3.5%. In anticipation of these restrictions, many shipowners have fitted open-loop scrubbing systems aimed at reducing the sulphur content to permissible levels.
With the ban, shipowners will now have to look to other options such as using cleaner (but more expensive) fuels, installing closed-loop or hybrid systems, or redesigning vessels to operate on alternative fuels such as liquefied natural gas (LNG).
Open-loop scrubbing systems are generally considered the easiest, and cheapest, onboard fuel treatment system. Exhaust gases are sprayed in the scrubber with seawater. The system relies on the seawater’s natural alkalinity, and forms sulphuric acid, which is then discharged into the surrounding waters (known as the wash-water).
The Port’s ban on open-loop scrubbers follows similar moves by other major international shipping hubs, notably Singapore and China. The reason generally cited for banning open-loop scrubbers is the potentially detrimental effect the wash-water may have on the surrounding marine environment. Advocates of open-loop scrubbers maintain that the wash-water causes no such harm.
Senior Associate, Transport & Insurance
Partner, Head of Transport & Insurance