Indian classification society, The Indian Register of Shipping (IRClass), continues to be instrumental in facilitating the aims and objectives of the Government’s Make in India initiative, lending its support this week in Mumbai to the Maritime India Summit.
“We are active not only in research and development and training for the national maritime industry, but also in formulating numerous Rules & Regulations for the construction and classification of a great many vessel and structure types,” confirmed Mr Arun Sharma, Chairman and Managing Director of IRClass, “including oceangoing tankers and bulk carriers, coastal & inland waterway transportation, and offshore superstructures. These activities involve close collaboration with various government agencies and official bodies, commercial organisations and, for the Defence Sector, with the Indian Navy and Coast Guard.
“IRClass was established in 1975 as Asia Pacific tonnage was catching up with Europe, with India being one of the major players in this regard,” he explained. “With the growing Indian tonnage, arose the need for us, a fundamentally strong, competent and cost-effective alternative to international Classification Societies. IRClass gave Indian vessel owners the confidence to build and run technically sound ships to last their desired life cycles.”
“We as an organisation have grown and strengthened as the national maritime sector has grown and strengthened. Accordingly, we have been making in-roads to international growth, which include membership of the International Association of Classification Societies, recognition by more and more global flag states, contributions to IMO , and expansion with new overseas offices,” he added.
“We have grown our classed tonnage from 9.77 million GRT to 11.07 million GRT over just two years despite difficult market conditions. We have also made two significant acquisitions: Geological & Metallurgical Laboratories (GML) and Safess Quality Management (SQML).
“When a classification society grows in technical competency and management systems, it benefits all owners equally, globally as well as nationally. Technical competency can be gauged through the ability to class different types of vessels, broadened ability to train surveyors, engagement with flag states, and being able to function as a centre for sharing technical information and research for future developments. IRClass has made, and continues to make, excellent progress in all these fields, and we are not sitting still – we intend to grow significantly, one of our objectives being the classification of 20 million GRT by the year 2020.”
IRClass, will be supporting the ‘Make in India’ initiative with a large exhibiting presence at the Maritime India Summit.