From The Maritime Executive. Published on March 7, 2016.

On March 7, Belgium became the latest country to ratify the Ballast Water Management Convention. Aimed at preventing the spread of harmful and invasive aquatic species in ships’ ballast water, the Convention requires ships to have procedures in place for ballast water management.

The Convention will enter into force 12 months after ratification by 30 States, representing 35 percent of world merchant shipping tonnage. With the accession by Belgium, the number of States stands at 48, with an aggregate of 34.82 percent of the world’s merchant fleet tonnage (based on global tonnage data as at end-February 2016).