The Nairobi International Convention on the Removal of Wrecks
The Nairobi International Convention on the Removal of Wrecks was adopted by an international conference held in Kenya in 2007 and entered into force on 14th April 2015. The Convention will impose strict liability and insurance obligations on the registered owners of all ships and floating platforms of 300 gross tonnes and above, which either become wrecks or cause wrecks up to 200 nautical miles from the coast, but not within its territorial waters (12 nautical miles). The Convention also applies to a ship that is about to, or may be expected to sink.
The International Maritime Organization (IMO) views the Convention as filling a current void in the existing international legal framework, by providing a basis for signatory states to have removed, hazardous shipwrecks that may affect the safety of lives, as well as cause adverse harm to the marine and coastal environment.
Ship owners that fall under these legislations are now required to maintain insurance that meets the requirements of the Convention and to obtain a certificate issued by a signatory state confirming that insurance for wreck removal is in place.
By Nathalie Langmead