The International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) welcomes principal ship recycling country Bangladesh ratification of the Hong Kong International Convention for the Safe and Environmentally Sound Recycling of Ships.

Until now 20 countries have ratified the Hong Kong Convention, accounting for around 30% of all merchant shipping’s combined gross tonnage.

With Bangladesh’s commitment, this brings the requirements for Convention being fulfilled to enter into force one step closer.

The Hong Cong Convention must be ratified by at least 15 nations, accounting for 40% of global commercial shipping by gross tonnage, with a combined maximum annual ship recycling volume of not less than 3% of their total tonnage, in order to come into force.

Ship recycling will be of significant importance in meeting net zero emissions by 2050 as the existing fleet is decommissioned in coming years to be replaced by net zero vessels.

Hong Kong Convention aims to ensure that ships when being recycled after reaching the end of their operational lives, do not pose any unnecessary risk to human health and safety or the environment.

John Stawpert, Senior Manager (Environment and Trade) of the International Chamber of Shipping, commented: ”Bangladesh shows leadership by committing to ratify the Convention. Our industry is international and ship recycling can only be effectively governed through a global system”.

Stawpert added that ”regional systems that ignore the economic realities of the industry are easily circumvented and this positive development will guarantee sufficient compliant recycling capacity under the oversight of national authorities and the United Nations regulator, the International Maritime Organization (IMO)”.