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Ship Breaking at Gadani Beach

The Gadani ship-breaking yard is a centre for the breaking up of derelict ocean-going vessels for scrap. The yard is located in Gadani, Pakistan, about 50 kilometres northwest of Karachi.
In the 1980s,the Gadani yard was described as the largest ship-breaking yard in the world, with more than 30,000 direct employees. However, competition from newer facilities in India and Bangladesh resulted in a significant reduction in output, with the Gadani yard producing less than one fifth of the scrap it produced twenty years ago. A reduction in taxes on scrap metal led to a modest resurgence at the Yard, which now employs around 6,000 workers.

Ships to be broken up are run aground on the beach under their own power, then gradually dismantled. As the weight of the ship lessens, it is dragged further onto the beach until completely scrapped. In common with many other breakers in the region, scrapping ships at Gadani uses large amounts of local cheap labor with minimal mechanical assistance.