Dredging data: Dredger flag states

In this edition of Dredging data, DPC shows the spread of flag states that the global dredging fleet is assigned to. To provide an easier overview, only flag states with more than 10 flagged vessels are included. Most of the vessels’ flag state corresponds with the place of residence of the shipowner

IHS Markit’s flag state data for dredging vessels reveals that the places with resident big fleet owners have flagged vessels with the local flag state – an opposite trend compared with the general merchant fleet.

Those locations are, for example, China, with 136 flagged vessels, the Netherlands with 74, and India and Japan each with 56 vessels. Out of the big five European companies, only one flags vessels in an area where it has a sub-base and not with the headquarters.

However, two countries not known to be an owner hub stand out: Malaysian-owned vessels have been flagged with the Commonwealth of Dominica and Sierra Leone. IHS Markit analysis could not find an obvious reason to not choose the Malaysian flag. At the same time, it shows that those Chinese-built vessels’ AIS transponders have been switched off for several years, making it difficult to find out if and where they are deployed. After Malaysia’s ban on sand exports in 2019, they might not be in use at all.