China Draft Provisions on Waterway Transport of Dangerous Goods Open for Comment

China’s Ministry of Transport (MOT) issued the “Draft Provisions on Administration of Waterway Transportation of Dangerous Goods”, the provisions are open for public comment until 28 October. The draft provisions give detailed requirements on classification, packaging, signs, permission, consigning, transportation and other aspects of waterway transportation of dangerous goods.




  • The provisions apply to waterway transport of dangerous goods on inland rivers, sea and at the ports within the territory of China.
  • The term Dangerous Goods refers to explosive, toxic, flammable, radioactive substances, materials and articles that could do harm to human health and environment and are listed in List of Dangerous Goods (GB 12268) and International Maritime Dangerous Goods Code (IMDG Code).


Classifications and divisions:


Dangerous goods are divided into 9 classes, based on Classification and Code of Dangerous Goods (GB 6944), List of Dangerous Goods (GB 12268) and IMDG Code.

  • Class 1: Explosives
  • Class 2: Gases
  • Class 3: Flammable liquids
  • Class 4: Flammable solids; substances liable to spontaneous combustion; substances which on contact with water emit flammable gases
  • Class 5: Oxidising substances and organic peroxides
  • Class 6: Toxic and infectious substances
  • Class 7: Radioactive material
  • Class 8: Corrosive substances
  • Class 9: Miscellaneous dangerous substances and articles, including environmentally hazardous substances

Some of these classes have subdivisions according to the hazard rating of the dangerous goods.


Packaging and labels:


  • Dangerous goods should be packaged properly and the properties of the package should be tested. The requirements of packaging and corresponding testing procedures are the same as IMDG Code Part 4&6.
  • For new types of packaging, other than those already complying with the above requirements, the shipper should get the package evaluated by qualified facilities and approved by MOT.
  • The labels and signs should comply with the requirements in IMDG Code Part 5 and “Packing Symbols of Dangerous Goods” (GB 190).


Approval and permission:


  • Anyone engaged in transport, consign, management and operation of waterway transport of dangerous goods should be trained and get appropriate qualifications from administrative authorities.
  • It’s forbidden to transport highly toxic chemicals and other chemicals banned by other regulations in enclosed bodies of water or inland rivers.
  • New dangerous goods should be evaluated and approved before being transported on inland rivers.


In addition, the draft provisions stipulate other specific requirements affecting cargo ships, consignment, port operations and supervision and inspection by maritime management authorities. Any comment on these provisions should be submitted in writing before 28 October.

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