China tightens 0.5% sulphur regulation in Yangtze Delta


China changes its ECA timeline again

The Maritime Safety Administrations (MSA) of Shanghai and Zhejiang have decided to tighten the regulation of the 0.5% sulphur limit within the Yangtze River Delta emission control area (ECA) from 1 October this year.


Currently, ships at berth in any port within the Yangtze River Delta emission control area must use fuel with a maximum sulphur content of 0.5% – except for one hour after arrival and one hour before departure. With the new regulation, the 0.5% sulphur limit will be effective at all times and the change was not expected to enter into force until 1 January 2019.


The early Implementation of change to the Fuel Sulphur Regulation in the Yangtze River Delta means that from 1 October, ships entering the emission control area (ECA) must use fuel with sulphur content of no more than 0.5%. The same is the case for ships at berth or anchorage, and the ship must therefore make sure to switch to compliant fuel prior to entering the Yangtze River Delta ECA.


According to the new regulation, ships connecting to shore power receiving facilities are exempted from the requirement, and ships will be allowed to use exhaust gas cleaning systems (scrubbers) to satisfy the new regulation.


The Maritime Safety Administrations (MSA) of Shanghai and Zhejiang have announced that ships will need to apply in advance to the appropriate regional MSA for any exemptions on using non-compliant fuel.


The regulation in the Bohai Bay ECA and Pearl River Delta ECA remains unchanged. Therefore, the requirement to use compliant fuel at all times within these ECAs will take effect on 1 January 2019 as scheduled.

We are grateful to Gard’s for providing this information.

Download RELATED Documents

Jeppe Skovbakke Juhl
in Copenhagen, DK


Access BIMCO's COVID-19 related articles and advice.

Read more

VPS Bunker Alerts

Veritas Petroleum Services (VPS) publish regular Bunker Alerts based entirely on fuel samples and have kindly permitted BIMCO’s Members to access this information.

The Bunker Alerts are not intended to be an evaluation of overall bunker quality in the port or area concerned, but usually highlight a specific parameter within the fuel which has raised a quality issue.

Latest piracy reports


Latest industry releasable threats



Contracts & Clauses

All of BIMCO's most widely used contracts and clauses as well as advice on managing charters and business partners.

Learn about your cargo

For general guidance and information on cargo-related queries.

More about cargo

BIMCO Publications

Want to buy or download a BIMCO publication? Use the link to get access to the ballast water management guide, the ship master’s security manual and many other publications.

About a new business partner

We can help members check new business partners. We also help to recover millions of USD (undisputed) funds every year.