© Joe Myerscough

A black spot among the ocean-going community, Gujarat’s shipping graveyard in Alang, is often barred from the view of journalists, NGOs and anyone else that may take offence at the scrapping hub’s working practices.

Despite this near-universal ban, ShippingWatch has managed to gain access to the beach where – since 1983 – ships have gone to die… and be recycled by poorly cared-for workers.

However, it seems the hub is plotting a course towards a more ethical working practice. It has, ShippingWatch claims, applied for Hong Kong certification. If granted, this would see the much maligned yard granted IMO standards for responsible ship-recycling practices.

It seems this about-turn has also resulted in a change of mind by Maersk, which has announced that it too will be sending its terminal vessels to the shipbreakers of Gujarat.

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