Turkey increased pollution fines

Standard Club warned shipowners regarding increased pollution fines in Turkey by more than 20%. Substantial ship pollution fines has been enforced as of 1 January 2020. Turkey’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has increased shipping pollution fines by more than 20% for 2020. For example, pollution caused by tankers, involving oil, bilge, sludge and slops etc, the fine is TRY 774 per gt for ships over 5,000 GT (Gross Tons). Conventional VLCC (Very Large Crude Carrier) might face a fine of at least TRY 121.5 million ($20.44 million). Pollution fines might be tripled for corporate shipowners, in other words conventional VLCC (Very Large Crude Carrier) might face a fine of $60 million. Furthermore, repeat offenders might face with fines doubled if a shipowner cause two (2) incidents within three (3) years. Fines will be tripled if another pollution event occur in the third year. Moreover, Turkey’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will enforce lesser but still punitive fines for ballast discharges and for offences by other ship types. On the other hand, if the shipowner cleans up the pollution itself, 33% of the fine will be imposed. According to Turkey’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), if a ship pollutes the environment, 25% discount full amount of the fine or security must be paid immediately, otherwise ship might be arrested. If the pollution fine is paid within 30 days, will be applied. Standard Club warned shipowners ​​that P&I (Protection and Indemnity) Club of LOU (Letter of Undertaking) are not always accepted in Turkey. Besides, Turkey’s Environmental Protection Agency only accepts translated and/or notarized documents. Criminal proceedings against masters (captains) may continue even if fines are paid by the shipowners.