Global application of the regulations in IMO’s treaty for safe and environmentally-sound ship recycling – the Hong Kong Convention – will have significant benefits for the environment and for the safety of workers in the sector.
China, a major ship recycling country, has been developing its ship recycling facilities to ensure their compliance with the environmental and occupational health and safety requirements of the Hong Kong Convention.
China shared its experience and knowledge with representatives of the government and ship recycling industry from Bangladesh, during an IMO Seminar on Ship Recycling and the Hong Kong Convention, held in Zhoushan, China (23-25 July).
The programme included a day-long seminar on ship recycling regulation and practices and the Hong Kong Convention. This was followed by site visits to Zhoushan Changhong International Ship Recycling Company Limited, a facility which builds, repairs and recycles ships in compliance with the international and national regulations and guidelines; and Zhoushan Nahai Solid Waste Central Disposal Company Limited to see its Treatment, Storage and Disposal Facility for waste management.
The event was hosted by China Maritime Safety Administration (MSA). It was part of a knowledge sharing endeavour within the framework of the Safe and Environmentally Sound Recycling of Ships in Bangladesh – Phase II (SENSREC) project, which IMO is implementing jointly with the Government of Bangladesh. The SENSREC project aims to facilitate the ratification and effective implementation of the Hong Kong Convention to ensure safe and environmentally sound ship recycling in Bangladesh.
The seminar was jointly organized by the IMO and China MSA, supported by the China Waterborne Transport Research and other relevant stakeholders of the Government of the People’s Republic of China.
Momentum is growing worldwide towards the ratification and implementation of the Hong Kong Convention, which covers the design, construction, operation and maintenance of ships, and preparation for ship recycling in order to facilitate safe and environmentally sound recycling, without compromising the safety and operational efficiency of ships. Under the treaty, ships to be sent for recycling are required to carry an inventory of hazardous materials, specific to each ship. Ship recycling yards are required to provide a “Ship Recycling Plan”, specifying the manner in which each ship will be recycled, depending on its particulars and its inventory. The treaty currently has 13 contracting States, representing 29.42% of world merchant shipping tonnage.