Bangladesh ratifies Hong Kong Convention for Sustainable Ship Recycling
Bangladesh has granted approval for the implementation of the Hong Kong Convention on the safe recycling of ships and offshore assets. This landmark decision positions Bangladesh as the second sub-continent recycling destination, following India, to ratify the convention.
Following extensive and sustained efforts, coupled with high-level meetings held in Chattogram two weeks ago, the cabinet has finally given its nod to the resolution. The foreign minister is now slated to sign the ratification into force, thereby paving the way for the convention’s submission to the International Maritime Organization (IMO), GMS, one of the world’s largest buyers of ships for recycling, said.
With the inclusion of Bangladesh, a prominent player in the ship recycling industry, the Hong Kong Convention has garnered approval from a total of twenty states to date.
Bangladesh plays a significant role as a shipbreaking nation due to its prominent shipbreaking industry.
The shipbreaking sector has been a strong revenue generator for the country’s economy and has played a massive role in the development of supporting industries and thus employment opportunities.
In preparation for the ratification of the convention, Bangladesh has been working on improving workplace safety and handling of hazardous materials at its shipbreaking yards with the aim of making its yards more sustainable and still attractive to customers around the globe.
Notably, the shipyards in Chittagong have recently undergone upgrades, resulting in two additional end users receiving class NK HKC accreditation, bringing the total number of accredited entities to three.
Looking ahead, the next crucial step following these highly encouraging developments is to secure flag state approval from either the Marshall Islands or Liberia. Such approval is necessary to finally enable the implementation of the Hong Kong Convention and realize its full potential.
The treaty requires a minimum of 15 states, representing 40% of the world’s merchant shipping by gross tonnage, to ratify it for it to enter into force.
The approval of the Hong Kong Convention on the safe recycling of ships and offshore assets by Bangladesh holds immense significance for the global maritime industry, particularly in the realm of sustainable ship recycling.
The convention, developed by the International Maritime Organization, aims to establish comprehensive standards and guidelines to ensure the safe and environmentally sound dismantling and recycling of ships.
The treaty sets forth stringent requirements for ship recycling facilities, including safety measures for workers, environmental safeguards, and proper disposal of hazardous materials.
The convention is expected to help eliminate dangerous work and polluting practices at yards, predominantly located in South Asia, which still recycle around 80% of the global end-of-life tonnage.