You can now download the Presentations from the
HNS Conference, held in Barcelona, on May 19 2004
Please click here


Is it Horrible Nasty Stuff?
Are you Happily IgNoring Situation?
Are you Honestly Not Sure?
Do you
ope No Solution? 


The International Convention on Liability and Compensation
For Damage in Connection with the Carriage of Hazardous and Noxious Substances
by Sea, 1996 (HNS)  


Wednesday 19 May 2004


Considerable quantities of many hazardous and noxious substances (HNS) are carried by sea each year.  Whilst ship safety has always been a priority, accidents will happen, sometimes with harmful, even fatal, consequences and when that happens they can prove to be very expensive. Several incidents involving ships carrying HNS have occurred in recent years, with many more near misses. 

The HNS Convention will allow compensation for actual damage arising from an HNS incident during its carriage by sea. It will also provide compensation for costs due to the incident including response and clean-up costs and economic losses that are directly attributable to the incident. Ratification and implementation of the HNS Convention will significantly improve the likelihood of victims of incidents involving the carriage of HNS by sea receiving prompt and adequate compensation. 

The HNS Fund will make compensation payments by raising levies on people in States party to the Convention who import certain quantities of HNS. This workshop will explain what substances are classified as "HNS" and who, under the Convention, will be liable to pay levies.  In many cases it is any person in a State party who receives HNS after carriage by sea in quantities exceeding a certain annual threshold.   There are exceptions (owners of Liquid Natural Gas cargoes prior to discharge are liable), and the thresholds are different for different substances.  Ratification and implementation of the HNS Convention will therefore have a considerable impact on industries involved in the importation of hazardous and noxious substances.

Shipowners of vessels carrying HNS will also be affected. Shipowners of any vessels carrying HNS entering or leaving port of States Party to the Convention will be required to have insurance to cover their limit of liability and will need to demonstrate this by a compulsory insurance certificate. This applies to all vessels, regardless of where they are registered.

The HNS Convention covers not only pollution or property  damage but also includes  death and personal injury for incidents involving chemicals, LNG, LPG and Oil (where not covered by other conventions e.g. IOPC Fund/ CLC).

You therefore need to understand that this DOES affect you and equally important Ė HOW it affects you. 

This one day Workshop aims at dispelling the myth that the HNS Convention is still negotiable or that if we ignore it, it might go away.

The EU States are required to bring the HNS Convention into force by June 2006 (European Council Decision 2002/971/EC of November 18, 2002) and it is anticipated that this will bring the Convention into force worldwide soon thereafter, and you should therefore urgently start thinking about what this means to you NOW.

The issue of contributing product identification is paramount to ensure incidents involving these substances are properly recorded and that compensation is available.

Of equal importance is the need to clarify the definition of Receiver.  You should be in no doubt that if you are the Receiver of an HNS product you have a LIABILITY to contribute to the scheme. The total amount including shipowners liability could be as high as 250m SDRs per HNS incident. 

Your Governments are about to make HNS law Ė THERE IS NO ESCAPE

  • Sitting on the fence is not an option

  • Burying your head in the sand is not an option

  • Attending this Workshop is an option but to miss it might be a serious mistake which will only become obvious after 2006



 Consider the following statements:

  • I donít know about this Convention

  • I donít understand why it affects me

  • I donít understand how it affects me

  • I donít know what a ďreceiverĒ is

  • I donít know what contributing products or cargoes are involved

  • I donít know what my exposure is

  • I donít know what my liability is

  • Is it still up for discussion?

  • Can it be changed?

  • I am not concerned because my persistent oil is already covered by IOPC regime.

If you can relate to any of the above then attendance is a must

This Workshop is aimed at:
  • Carriers and receivers of bulk oil whether persistent on non persistent
  • Carriers and receivers of bulk chemicals
  • Carriers and receivers of bulk LPG
  • Carriers and receivers of bulk LNG
  • Carriers and receivers of packaged goods
  • Insurers
  • Lawyers
  • Governments

Conference Chair:

Mr John Wren
Head of Branch, Shipping Policy
Department for Transport, United Kingdom


 We are looking forward to welcoming you to Barcelona, 

Nathalie Soisson
Transport Safety Group Coordinator
Jannis Kostoulas
Managing Director
Mare Forum
Paul Markides
Oil Companies International Marine Forum (OCIMF)

The Programme


Beurs - World Trade Center
P.O. Box 30027
3001 DA Rotterdam
The Netherlands



+31.10.281 06 55


+31.10.270 98 70