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Verified Gross Mass


In order to avoid safety problems at sea and ashore arising from container shipments that have incorrect weight declarations, the International Maritime Organization (IMO) adopted new regulations regarding the mandatory container gross weight verification also called the “Verified Gross Mass” (VGM) of the container.

This new regulation will entail that, as from July 1st 2016, the shipper is required to verify and communicate the gross weight of the packed container, before the container can be loaded on board a ship.

The shipper may obtain the verified gross mass of a packed container following one of the following prescribed methods:

Method 1 - Weighing
• After the container has been completely packed and sealed, the container is weighed, either by the shipper or by a third party acting on behalf of the shipper.

Method 2 - Calculating
• All cargo items, packing material, lashing material and eventual other may be weighed separately and must be added to the Tare of the container as per the CSC plate.
• This method however is subject to certification and approval by the competent authority in the state in which the packing and sealing of the container is completed.

Note: Regardless of what method is used, the weighing equipment used must meet the applicable accuracy standards and requirement of the state in which the equipment is being used.

SOLAS requires that the VGM information is submitted sufficiently in advance of vessel loading to be used in the preparation of the ship stowage plan. For NileDutch this deadline will generally fall 24 hours before vessel arrival, but may vary depending on the arrival time of the vessel and other factors.

A packed container, for which the verified gross mass has not been obtained will not be loaded on the vessel.


Click here to view the ‘NileDutch frequently asked questions’.
Click here to get a brief overview of VGM in NileDutch.
Click here to view the ‘Industries frequently asked questions’.
Click here to download the 'NileDutch VGM submission template'.
Click here to contact us in case of questions.