Indian Government Approves Proposal for Hong Kong Convention Accession

Hong Kong ConventionIllustration; Image Courtesy: NGO Shipbreaking Yard

India’s Union Cabinet has approved a proposal for the accession to the Hong Kong International Convention for Safe and Environmentally Sound Recycling of Ships, 2009.

By joining the convention, India would become the 14th country to join the International Maritime Organization (IMO) treaty.

The most recent member of the treaty is Germany, which joined in July this year.

Under the bill, ship recycling facilities are required to be authorized and ships shall be recycled only in such authorized ship recycling facilities.

The bill also provides that ships shall be recycled in accordance with a ship-specific recycling plan. Ships to be recycled in India shall be required to obtain a Ready for Recycling Certificate in accordance with the HKC.

When the Hong Kong International Convention for Safe and Environmentally Sound Recycling of Ships, 2009 comes into force, its provisions will be implemented under the provisions of the Recycling of Ships Bill, 2019, the Indian government said.

India is at the forefront of the global ship recycling industry, with a share of over 30% of the market.

“With this giant step, the Indian government has ensured that not only on the micro-end, will the industry continue to operate while keeping worker health and the safety of the environment at heart, but on the macro-end, a growing number of ship owners seeking SoC based green-recycling options can be certain that the authorities have added another layer of security for their incoming vessels,” Anil Sharma, CEO of cash buyer GMS, commented.

“As a result, this bill eases the restrictions on non-EU yards that are currently imposed by the EUSRR.” 

“India was always the key to unlocking Hong Kong Convention’s entry into force and after a number of years waiting for India’s ship recycling industry to mature and embrace the technical standards of the Convention, and having witnessed that remarkable transformation, it is now most rewarding to receive news that India’s Cabinet has adopted the Convention as India’s own standard,” Nikos Mikelis, non-executive director of GMS, added.

“It now only remains for Parliament’s both houses to review and pass the new bill before India’s President signs India’s accession to the Hong Kong Convention.”

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