This consultation seeks views from the public and interested parties on whether New Zealand should sign up to an international treaty for the prevention of air emissions from ships.

Consultation opens Monday 5 November 2018 and closes at 5pm Monday 11 Feburary 2019.

This International Maritime Organization treaty, Annex VI of the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL), regulates emissions that are harmful to public health, deplete the ozone layer and contribute to climate change.

Annex VI accession would have benefits for New Zealand. It would:

  • reduce carbon emissions and improve air quality around our ports and harbours

  • provide investment certainty to domestic ship owners and fuel suppliers

  • demonstrate commitment to the ‘level playing field’ for international maritime regulation that we benefit from as a trading and maritime nation.

Annex VI accession would also have costs. Its regulations would impose costs on ship owners and operators, and their customers. Ships burning heavy fuel oil would need to switch to low sulphur fuel.

Annex VI impacts on New Zealand will increase over time, whether we accede or not. Our ships already need to comply with its requirements when visiting foreign ports. Foreign ships in our ports will need access to low-sulphur fuel from 1 January 2020.

Your feedback is important. It will inform advice to Government on whether New Zealand should accede to Annex VI.   

How to send us your feedback

There are a few ways you can make a submission:

  1. Use the discussion paper linked to above and either email your submission to or post to MARPOL Annex VI submission, PO Box 3175, Wellington 6140. If you email please use the words ‘MARPOL Annex VI submission’ in the subject line. There are a number of questions in the document. Feel free to focus on those that are most relevant to you or your organisation.
  2. Download the survey here [PDF, 78 KB] and email it to us at
  3. We are also accepting email submissions to this query, please find the questions below if you just reply with your answers to each we’ll log and include it in our engagement documents.
    • Your name, where you live (location is fine, we don’t need your address) 
    • Do you think New Zealand should accede to MARPOL Annex VI?
    • Why do you think this?
    • Sometimes we want to know a little bit more about what someone thinks. If this is the case with you, are you ok if we get in touch? What is the best way to do this? (please provide an email or phone number).

If you need more information to assist you in preparing a submission, please contact Brian Nijman at or through the email address above.