24 November 2011

Bangladesh Shipbreaking Policy by end-January: Minister tells National Parliament

Industries Minister Dilip Barua yesterday in parliament set the end of January as a fresh deadline for finalising the "environment-friendly" shipbreaking policy.

Replying to lawmakers' queries, he said it is expected that the shipbreaking policy will be finalised by January next year, aiming to help the sector grow without causing any harm to the environment.

Earlier on September 17, the minister said the government would finalise the shipbreaking and recycling policy by October, this year.

The Ministry of Industries has already posted the draft policy on its website inviting public opinion on it, said Dilip Barua yesterday.

In the scripted reply, the minister said the shipbreaking industry has been brought under the industries ministry in the interest of industrialisation.

The shipbreaking industry, developing on the seashore in Chittagong, is the main source of the raw materials used by some 500 private sector re-rolling mills and nearly 50 steel mills that produce mild steel rods, bars, and angles at affordable prices.

The growing demand for steel products in the country has encouraged a good number of people to engage in the industry that proved to be very rewarding in terms of profit and employment generation.

But safety of shipbreaking workers is often neglected. Besides, concerns surfaced over the environmental issues centering the industry.

Source: The Daily Star. 21 November 2011

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