Spain is the latest country to accede to IMO’s treaty for safe and environmentally-sound ship recycling – the Hong Kong Convention. It covers the design, construction, operation and maintenance of ships, and preparation for ship recycling in order to facilitate safe and environmentally sound recycling.

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.

Mr. Víctor Jiménez Fernández, Counsellor for Transport, Alternate Permanent Representative of Spain to IMO, met IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim (3 June) to deposit the instrument of accession.

Two criteria to be met before Convention enters into force

So far, seventeen states have signed the convention. These are Belgium, Congo, Croatia, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany, Ghana, India, Japan, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway, Panama, Serbia, Spain and Turkey. This means the first criterium of at least fifteen countries acceding has been met.

However, together, they represent approximately 29.77 per cent of the gross tonnage of the world’s merchant shipping. For the convention to enter into force, forty per cent of the gross tonnage is needed as well as a combined annual ship recycling volume of three per cent. The latter now stands at 13,967,2602 gross tonnage or 2.44 per cent.

The Convention will enter into force 24 months after all three criteria have been met.

Picture: Taken during an IMO mission to the Bangladesh recycling project in February 2015 (by IMO).

Also read: Video: Decommissioning of MV Kaami at Kishorn Dry Dock