"Bangladesh Supreme Court Allows Ship Breaking To Continue"

"Bangladesh's Supreme Court agreed on Monday to allow ship breaking yards more time to meet tougher safety and environmental rules, allowing them to operate until at least mid-October.

Judges backed a lower court's ruling two weeks ago that extended the deadline for the $1.5 billion ship scrap industry to implement strict government rules aimed at protecting workers and reducing the level of pollution.

"The Supreme Court upheld the decision of the High Court and we will be able to import and dismantle old ships until the extended date," Salah Uddin, an advisor of the Bangladesh Ship Breakers Association, told Reuters. The deadline is October 12.

Rights activists had hoped the court would reinstate a year-long ban on the industry, saying its activities remained too dangerous for workers and too costly for the environment. The ban was lifted in March."

Serajul Quadir reports for Reuters August 9, 2011.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011