Shipowners and shipbuilders in planning for the 1980s need to take into account regulatory and environmental aspects, including requirements resulting from amendments to international agreements such as the Safety of Life at Sea (Solas) Convention and the Oil Pollution Convention which, while agreed by the I.M.C.O. Assembly, are not yet in force internationally. An assessment of such requirements likely to come into force nationally and internationally in future years can only be an estimate since the context is a developing situation open to influence by major events. Environmental concern is of growing significance and additional requirements may well arise from the 1972 Marine Pollution Conference, possibly leading to a prohibition of all deliberate discharges of oil and other noxious substances into the sea by the 1980s. There will be increasing emphasis on navigational matters, including the adoption of traffic separation schemes and navigational advisory schemes in such waterways as the Dover Strait, with the possibility of more positive action. There is international pressure which may lead to developments on standards of competency of officers and crews and safe manning of ships. Changes in requirements for ship construction and equipment are likely to arise in the context of amendments to Solas 1960 and to the Oil Pollution Convention.