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The European Barge Inspection Scheme (EBIS) was transitioned into OCIMF’s Ship Inspection Report (SIRE) programme on 1 January 2021 to create a single barge inspection scheme within Europe.

The OCIMF-EBIS Transition Taskforce, and more recently the BIQ5-EBIS9 Inspection Working Group, have been working closely with EBIS members, SIRE Programme Participants and Submitting Companies as well as inspectors to manage the change and ensure a smooth transition. To date, approximately half of EBIS members have been approved by OCIMF to commission BIQ-EBIS9 inspections within the SIRE programme and are also able to appoint an accredited inspector, with more EBIS members being invited to go through the application process.

To provide a forum for discussion and encourage greater participation in the SIRE programme, on 30 June 2021 – six months since the transition date – OCIMF hosted a webinar for all EBIS members. The speakers provided an overview of the key developments through 2021, including the introduction of new criteria for EBIS members to become SIRE Submitting Companies. Practical guidance for becoming an OCIMF Submitting Company was provided to attendees, along with an overview of key procedures and policies within the SIRE. 

The webinar speakers Sam Megwa, Programmes Director, Marc De Backer, Barge Advisor, Patrick McGroggan, Quality Assurance Manager, and Ajay Gour, Inspection Training and Accreditation Manager, were joined by Bob Brook, Chairman of EBIS, for an open Q&A session. The panel answered questions from the audience, providing clarifications to queries, most of which related to the inspection request and booking process for BIQ5-EBIS9 inspections and becoming an OCIMF Submitting Company.

The event was attended by more than 50 representatives from 26 EBIS member companies.