Indian Register of Shipping lambasts western views on sanctions against Russia

The Indian Register of Shipping (IRS), the fastest growing classification society in the world this quarter, has sought to explain it stance on taking so many Russian-linked ships onto its books in recent months.

Using data from the website of the International Association of Classification Societies (IACS), Splash reported earlier this month on how more than 50 Russian-linked ships have moved to be classed by the Mumbai-headquartered IRS as Moscow seeks solutions to keep trading despite being faced with an ever growing range of sanctions in the four months since war began with Ukraine.

IRS pointed out in a release today that it has been asked to provide safety related classification and survey services to a number of vessels by Dubai-based entities whose vessels are registered in Liberia and Cyprus. None of the companies which own the ships are registered in Russia, IRS stressed.

The class society then went to lambast media reports that refer to “international” and “global” sanctions.

“As far as we are aware there are no United Nations mandated sanctions on Russia. These descriptions in fact refer to sanctions issued by the United States of America and some European countries. We note the vast majority of countries around the world, including India, have not issued sanctions against Russia,” IRS pointed out.

India, as a whole, has been welcoming Russian business while other nations have shunned Russia this year. Indian imports of Russian crude from the Black Sea have grown seven-fold since the war started and are up ten-fold from the Baltic, significantly altering the fortunes for various classes of tankers.

The validity of sanctions against Russia formed much of the debate across various shipowning panels at Posidonia in Athens earlier this month with Evangelos Marinakis, chairman and founder of Capital Maritime & Trading Corp, going so far as to call them “bullshit” in front of hundreds of delegates at the TradeWinds Shipowners Forum.

Meanwhile, at the G7 summit in Munich, where leaders of some of the world’s wealthiest countries are meeting, further measures against Russian shipping are being discussed. G7 leaders have been debating a cap on the price of Russian oil that would work by imposing restrictions on insurance and shipping. The European Union agreed last month to introduce a ban on insurance related to the transportation of Russian oil.

State-run Sovcomflot revealed earlier this month that it has got all of its ships now covered via Russian insurers after western P&I clubs dropped the company in the face of sanctions.

Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.


  1. “Dubai-based entities whose vessels are registered in Liberia and Cyprus. None of the companies which own the ships are registered in Russia, IRS stressed.”
    Do they believe people don’t understand how company registries work?

  2. Yankeeland is ruining a hysterical Europe using illegal sanctions against Russia. Sad to see!

  3. “world’s wealthiest countries are meeting”
    World’s wealthiest countries are fully in debt and don’t know how to come out (need war). Now everything, their governments are doing, is against their populations.

  4. The west needs to wake up & come into the this century.
    Who the heck is G-7 . What is the ttl debt of G 7 ?
    Sanctions do not work & never will.
    Tell them hve another meeting – waste tax payers money, pollute the air and area. Take group picyures, hug each other
    and go back to the real problems of their countries !!
    Stop trying to make a fool of people.

  5. Clearly the need for sanctions and other support for the Ukraine depends on whether one accepts and values the need for sovereignty, democracy and rules based order over tyranny, autocracy and short term self-interest.

  6. It is an aganoy what is happening in Ukraine, friends of yesterday are fighting today along with enemy of yesterday’s. Why ordinary Ukrainian is cull on alter in the name of democracy or socialism, any amount of money or weapons can bring the dead or heal the scars of orphans? those who are responsible for the present carnage are lavishly discussing the strategy to kill more to sell more to kill more. Any military alliances are made to kill similar any weapons are made to kill.
    When we will be grown-up enough to be real human beings.

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