APRIL 27, 2016 — Classification society ABS held its 153rd Annual Meeting in New York yesterday.
Chairman, President & CEO Christopher J. Wiernicki reported that "2015 was a year of moving forward in strong and sustainable ways with a relentless focus on our class-centric strategy."
In 2015, the ABS-classed fleet grew to more than 230 million gross tons, nearly five percent up on the previous year. The largest areas of expansion were in the tanker, gas carrier, containership, bulk carrier, offshore support vessel, and offshore production unit sectors.
In total, more than 841 new assets entered the ABS-classed fleet, bringing its total to 12,614 assets.
The ABS orderbook saw even more appreciable growth in 2015, with a 15 percent year-on-year increase to 57.2 million gt of vessels set to be classed. That was coupled with the society's second straight year of net positive class transfers.
"We had a solid performance in 2015, earning the top position in global orderbook share based on gross tonnage and confirming our strong relationships with owners and shipyards around the world," said Mr. Wiernicki. "Our continued growth shows that ABS is well-positioned for today and we are equally ready for tomorrow."
During the meeting Mr. Wiernicki highlighted a number of cutting-edge projects where ABS is involved, such as the world's first CNG Carrier and the world's largest and most advanced wind farm installation and offshore construction vessels. ABS also granted approval in principle (AIP) to a drillship designed for high pressure/high temperature operations in ultra deepwater and harsh conditions, and provided approval for many new concepts such as a dual fuel bulk carrier design, innovative LNG containment systems, and an offshore LNG receiving, storage, regasification, and bunkering terminal.
"Dedication to providing great classification services, demonstrating industry-recognized technology leadership, and being our clients' trusted advisor in every environment is what fundamentally defines the success of ABS," said Mr. Wiernicki.
Looking to the future, Mr. Wiernicki also provided an overview of ABS' Technology program that is developing advanced technologies and practices to support the future of classification. In 2015, ABS participated in 43 joint development and industry research projects and 37 academic research partnerships as part of more than 150 technology projects. ABS published 64 new or updated Rules, Guides, Guidance Notes, and Advisories.
In the area of Port State Control, ABS reported continued success with the organization continuing to rate amongst the top tier of classification societies in the three major regimes.