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News article15 March 2023Directorate-General for Environment2 min read

Commission consults citizens and stakeholders on the Ship Recycling Regulation

Ship in shipyard.
© ollo / Getty Images

The European Commission has launched an online public consultation on the evaluation of the Ship Recycling Regulation that will run until June 7, 2023. 

Since 2013, the EU Ship Recycling Regulation has provided a regulatory framework for the recycling of EU-flagged ships. It acts as a benchmark for ship recycling legislation around the world.  

Most ships are built with materials that are suitable for recycling. When ships are dismantled, steel, other scrap metals and various types of equipment become available and can be reuse further.  

Many ships, however, are dismantled outside the EU, under conditions that are often harmful to workers' health and the environment.    

The ongoing evaluation aims to:   

  • assess how well the Regulation has been applied and its impact to date 
  • assess how well it contributes to the general policy objectives of the European Green Deal and the circular economy action plan 
  • identify shortcomings with its implementation and enforcement. 

Depending on the findings of the evaluation, the Commission might then launch a revision process for the Regulation. 

Safe and environmentally sound ship recycling requires the involvement of a wide range of actors, from shipowners to recyclers, from brokers to industry, from national governments to third country authorities, and from NGOs to citizens. 


The EU’s Ship Recycling Regulation is the only dedicated legally binding framework regulating ship recycling at international level. It was adopted in 2013 with the aim to provide a regulatory framework for the recycling of EU-flagged ships. 

The Regulation includes:  

  1. requirements for ships and recycling facilities 
  2. limits and prohibitions on the installation and use of hazardous materials on ships (i.e., asbestos)   
  3. a European list of compliant ship recycling facilities located in the EU and the rest of the world.  

The Regulation transposes into EU law the requirements of the Hong Kong Convention (adopted in 2009, but not yet in force) for safe and environmentally sound ship recycling, while also adding additional safety and environmental requirements.  

The first European List of Ship Recycling Facilities was established on December 19, 2016, and last updated on December 14, 2022. It currently contains 45 facilities. Of these, 38 yards are in Europe (EU/EEA/UK), 6 yards in Türkiye, and 1 in the United States. 

More information


Publication date
15 March 2023
Directorate-General for Environment

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