Improving conditions in Shipbreaking
On muddy beaches in Asia – in India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, China – most of the world's ships are taken apart. Worked on by hundreds of unprotected and often inadequately trained workers, they quickly become piles of scrap steel and parts.
Scrapping ships is one of the most work-intensive and dangerous jobs there is. All in all, the highly hazardous shipbreaking industry – including all branches with a direct link to the scrapping operations – employs over 160,000 workers in India alone.
IMF and its affiliates are working together to improves the lives of shipbreaking workers.
Learn more about shipbreaking:
- March 2008: Indian shipbreaking workers' strike Successful
250 workers reverse employers’ attempt to reduce wages at Alang Shipbreaking yard.
- October 2006: Shipbreaking workers call on IMO to save lives
Shipbreaking workers tell of deadly risks and plead for reform.
- April 2006: IMF releases report on India's shipbreakers
Groundbreaking research uncovers working conditions, wages, and economic status of shipbreaking workers in the world's most dangerous industry.
- September 2004: ILO publishes new guidelines for shipbreaking
New guidelines for Asian countries and Turkey, point the way towards safer working conditions in shipbreaking.
- August 2004: IMF shipbreaking project expands
Its scope extends to the large shipbreaking site in Alang; objectives include organising shipbreaking workers into a trade union.
- January 2004: Shipbreaking project moves ahead
Water tanks and first-aid installed, workers trained on first-aid.
- August 2003: IMF launches organising project
A new IMF project will address the basic problems of shipbreaking workers in India.
- August 2003: "Conditions for shipbreaking work are inhuman"
Opinion column by the IMF General Secretary Marcello Malentacchi
- August 2003: Shipbreaking: Lives at stake
Feature report from shipbreaking sites in Mumbai, India