IHS Maritime 360 – Box shipping groups attacked for beach scrapping

(Written by Andrew Spurrier)

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27 January 2015 - Leading container shipping groups are under fire from a safe shipbreaking campaign group for continuing to send vessels to “sub-standard” beach demolition yards on the Indian sub-continent.

NGO Shipbreaking Platform (NSP) claimed today that 641 out of 1,026 vessels demolished last year were sent to such beach-based facilities in India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh.

The organisation, which reported 23 deaths and 66 severe injuries in shipbreaking accidents last year in South Asia, singled out German owner Ernst Komrowski as the “worst global dumper” with 14 vessels sent for beach scrapping last year.

But Komrowski told IHS Maritime the report was incorrect.
Managing director Ernst P Komrowski said the vessels concerned were being managed by other companies at the time they were sent for scrapping.

Second on the organisation’s list was Korea’s Hanjin Shipping, with 11 vessels scrapped in South Asia, followed by Mediterranean Shipping Company, with seven vessels.

Brazil’s Petrobras came fourth with six vessels, followed by Germany’s Conti, Danaos of Greece, Italy’s Ignazio Messina, TBS International of the US, Singapore’s Pacific International and Taiwan’s Yang Ming with five ships each.

NSP said that the European Union (EU) had a particular responsibility to act following the entry into the statute books in December 2013 of its Ship Recycling Regulation, which bans beach-based shipbreaking.

The regulation is not yet enforceable but NSP policy adviser Ingvild Jenssen told IHS Maritime that she expected it to become so by mid-2016 following publication of a list of EU approved facilities before the end of this year.

“Shipowners are aware of this, as are European shipowners’ associations, and we expect that more and more EU ship owners will commit to using the EU list,” she said.