PAKISTAN ADVANCES TOWARDS ACCESSION OF HONG KONG CONVENTION FOR SHIP RECYCLING
The Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Maritime Affairs Vice Admiral (Retired) Mr. Iftikhar Rao presided over a meeting on accession of the “International Convention for the safe and environmentally sound recycling of ships 2009 (Hong Kong Convention). Secretary Ministry of Maritime Affairs Dr. Iram Anjum Khan and other senior officers from the Ministry of Maritime Affairs also attended the meeting.
It was discussed in the meeting that Pakistan has played a pioneering role in the international ship recycling industry since the 1980s, with Gaddani emerging as a prominent global ship breaking site. However, the industry has faced challenges related to environmental sustainability and worker safety over the years. Pakistan's accession to the Hong Kong Convention is seen as a crucial step to address these challenges and secure the industry's future.
The Ministry of Maritime Affairs is spearheading the accession process, which is currently in its final stages. A broad consensus has been reached among federal, provincial, and private stakeholders in support of Pakistan's accession to the Hong Kong Convention, with widespread acknowledgment of the benefits it will bring to the ship recycling industry. It was also highlighted in the meeting that although significant progress has been made in this regard, a few remaining stakeholders are yet to provide their concurrence for accession. The government is actively engaging with these stakeholders to address any concerns and ensure a unified commitment to this critical initiative.
In conclusion, Pakistan's move towards formal accession solidifies its position as a responsible global player in ship recycling, emphasizing safety, sustainability, and transparency. This commitment, led by the Ministry of Maritime Affairs and supported by stakeholders, propels Pakistan towards a safer, cleaner, and more sustainable industry.