Bangladesh is set to receive funding for the second phase of a project implemented by the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) to improve safe and environmentally friendly ship recycling operations.

The two-year project is scheduled to begin next month and will receive a financing package of $1.1m as part of a funding agreement signed between IMO and Norway last month.

Norway’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs will offer the funding to Bangladesh via the Embassy of Norway.

"The two-year project is scheduled to begin next month and will receive a financing package of $1.1m as part of a funding agreement signed between IMO and Norway."

Bangladesh is currently one the world’s top four ship recycling countries by capacity, along with China, India and Pakistan, which together conduct 94.9% of all known ship recycling activities worldwide.

IMO Marine Environment Division director Dr Stefan Micallef said: “The key focus of this phase will be on training and governance to ensure safe and sustainable ship recycling.”

The proposed initiative will be based on the first phase of the Safe and Environmentally Sound Ship Recycling in Bangladesh (SENSREC) project, which has been devised as a result of economic and environmental studies conducted on ship recycling in Bangladesh.

SENSREC includes training materials and capacity-building plans, as well as a preliminary design for various infrastructures such as facilities for the treatment, storage and disposal of hazardous wastes generated from recycling operations.

The second phase of the SENSREC project, known as SENSREC Phase II – capacity building, is expected to help Bangladesh comply with current global ship recycling requirements.

It also seeks to assist Bangladesh in agreeing with the IMO’s ship recycling treaty, the Hong Kong International Convention for the Safe and Environmentally Sound Recycling of Ships (Hong Kong Convention).

In addition, the SENSREC Phase II – capacity building project intends to train workers in ship recycling yards, as well as supervisors and government officials in Bangladesh.