Sanctions against ships for breach of MARPOL Annex VI are determined by the port States which have enacted the regulations into local law. Depending on local law, fines, which vary from State to State, can be imposed against owners or the Master. There may be both civil and criminal penalties for MARPOL Annex VI violations, including imprisonment.
If a port State imposes fines for non-compliance on the ship, owners would be responsible for paying those fines. Depending on the terms of the charter party, they might be entitled to an indemnity from charterers. While the fines will vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction the wording of the MARPOL Convention requires that these be ’adequate in severity to discourage violations … irrespective where the violations occur’.