ICS warns on “environmental” charges in Philippines

The International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) has released notes on attempts by the Philippines province of Zambales to impose environmental charges.

Circular MC(15)64 of December 7th 2015 informed Members that, following discussions with the Province of Zambales, it had been agreed that invoices raised against ships that transited the coastal waters of Zambales should not be paid. Notwithstanding this agreement, ICS said that it had been informed that recently the Province of Zambales had once again started making an environmental charge for ships on passage through the coastal region.

ICS secretary general Peter Hinchcliffe wrote that “this action is understood to be contrary to the official opinion issued by the Philippines Legal Department when this issue last arose in 2015. ICS has been advised by the Filipino Shipowners’ Association (FSA) that companies should for the time being not pay in response to any invoices received.”

The FSA further advises that deferment for 60 days will give sufficient time for the FSA and the Philippines Congress to investigate and to take action. In the interim, ICS Members are invited to keep the secretariat informed of invoices received, via jade.smith@ics-shipping.org

Japan P&I Club has provided a text of the relevant ICS communication. https://www.piclub.or.jp/?action=common_download_main&upload_id=10556