IRClass Opens Office in Alang

International classification society Indian Register of Shipping (IRClass) has opened an office in Alang, India.

The new office will serve to support IRClass’ ship recycling initiative in Alang, following its recent initiative of certifying ship recycling yards according to EU standards as an ‘Independent Verifier’, the classification society said.

IRClass Systems and Solutions Pvt. Ltd. (ISSPL), an entity promoted by Indian Register of Shipping, has since certified four ship recycling yards in Alang as an ‘Independent Verifier’ in accordance with the requirements of European Union Ship Recycling Regulation (EUSRR) 1257/2013.

“It is an opportune time to have a presence in Alang. This is a step in the right direction in India’s transformation into an international maritime hub. As one of the first few organizations in the world to certify ship recycling yards, we believe we are at the forefront of change in encouraging sustainable ship recycling practice,” Arun Sharma, Chairman of ISSPL, said.

So far, about 25 ship recycling facilities have approached IRClass for different services which included compliance audit against Hong Kong Convention (HKC), EU compliance audit and ISO certifications.

IRClass said it hopes to achieve heightened awareness on sustainable ship recycling by conducting training programs, mainly touching on the safety aspects of ship recycling.

The aim of sustainable ship recycling, according to International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) Hong Kong International Convention for the Safe and Environmentally Sound Recycling of Ships (Hong Kong Convention), is to ensure that ships when recycled, do not pose any unnecessary risks to human health, safety and to the environment.

The convention, adopted in 2009, will enter into force 24 months after the date on which 15 states, representing 40 percent of world merchant shipping by gross tonnage, have either signed it without reservation as to ratification, acceptance or approval or have deposited instruments of ratification, acceptance, approval or accession with the IMO Secretary-General.

Until now, the Hong Kong Convention has been signed by five countries including Panama, France, Belgium, Norway and the Republic of Congo, representing 20.36 percent of world tonnage.