The Hong Kong International Convention for the Safe and Environmentally Sound Recycling of Ships (Hong Kong Convention) will enter effect in 2025 after Bangladesh and Liberia became the latest contracting states to the Convention helping meet some key conditions for its entry into force.
The threshold criteria within the Convention’s terms require ratification by no fewer than 15 states comprising no less than 40% of the world’s merchant shipping gross tonnage with a ship recycling capacity of no less than 3% of the gross tonnage within the states who have ratified the treaty for the Convention to enter into force.
These conditions have now been met with Bangladesh and Liberia separately depositing the instrument of accession with IMO secretary general Kitack Lim on 26 June 2023 at IMO headquarters in London.
This paves the way for the Hong Kong Convention to enter into force on 26 June 2025, according to the IMO.
The contracting parties to the Hong Kong Convention now include Bangladesh, Belgium, Republic of the Congo, Croatia, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany, Ghana, India, Japan, Liberia, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway, Panama, Portugal, São Tomé and Príncipe, Serbia, Spain and Turkey.
The 22 contracting states to the Convention represent approximately 45.81% of the gross tonnage of the world’s merchant shipping. The combined annual ship recycling volume of the contracting states during the preceding 10 years amounts to 23,848,453gt, equivalent to 3.31% of the required recycling volume.
Bangladesh is one of the world’s largest ship recycling countries by capacity while Liberia is one of the world’s largest flag states by tonnage.
The Hong Kong Convention was adopted at a diplomatic conference held in Hong Kong, China, in 2009. It is aimed at ensuring that ships, when being recycled after reaching the end of their operational lives, do not pose any unnecessary risks to human health, safety and to the environment.