A total of 10 perpetrators armed with knives boarded the tug boat/supply vessel ‘Bridgewater 80’, while underway west of Kutubdia, Bangladesh, according to information by ReCAAP ISC.
The COVID-19 pandemic has temporarily shuttered shipbreaking yards in Bangladesh, delaying safety reforms in one of the world’s most popular ship dismantling destinations which has been scrutinized several times over its dangerous and dirty practices.
The third phase of an IMO-implemented project to enhance safe and environmentally sound ship recycling in Bangladesh has been given the go-ahead, with Norway committing approximately US$1.5 million (14 million Norwegian Kroner) to support improved ship recycling in Bangladesh.
Progress towards greener and safer ship recycling in Bangladesh has been reported during the annual meeting for the IMO-Norway-Bangladesh project on “Safe and Environmentally Sound Ship Recycling in Bangladesh – Phase II” (SENSREC), held virtually on 8 of July.
Despite the COVID-19 crisis, the NGO Shipbreaking Platform reported that one third of shibreaking yards in Bangladesh continued their operations, exposing workers to health risks.
The ferry Morning Bird was struck from behind just yards from the busy pier at Sadarghat during the morning rush hour, which led to a fatal accident and 32 bodies having been recovered from the wreck.
The Floating Storage and Offloading (FSO) tanker J. NAT is currently being towed towards the infamous shipbreaking beach of Chattogram. The ship left Indonesian waters on 18 April even though local activists warned Indonesian authorities about the toxicity of the vessel. The NGO Shipbreaking Platform, Basel Action Network (BAN), European Environmental Bureau (EEB), IPEN, Nexus3 Foundation and Zero Mercury Working Group have now warned Bangladesh of the breach of international waste laws, and urged authorities to halt the import of the ship.
According to new data released by the NGO Shipbreaking Platform, 674 ocean-going commercial ships and offshore units were sold to the scrap yards in 2019. Of these vessels, 469 large tankers, bulkers, floating platforms, cargo and passenger ships were broken down on only three beaches in Bangladesh, India and Pakistan. This number amounts to approximately 90% of the gross tonnage dismantled worldwide.
On 14 January, Damen Shipyards Group along with Gentium Solutions inked a MoU with the Ministry of Industry of Bangladesh in Dhaka, in order to boost the development of shipbuilding and ship repair industry in Bangladesh. Representatives of the Netherlands Embassy in Bangladesh, were also present at the signing ceremony.
The ship breaking activity in developing countries, such as India, Bangladesh and Pakistan, has been subject to criticism because of the negative impacts the industry has on the environment and workers. Now, a report by the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) in Mumbai found that there has been little improvements in the shipbreaking yards with regards to working conditions. It also presents several breaches of the national legal framework.
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