The Union Cabinet has approved the proposal for ratification of Minamata Convention on Mercury and depositing the instrument of ratification enabling India to become a Party of the Convention.
- The approval entails Ratification of the Minamata Convention on Mercury along with flexibility for continued use of mercury-based products and processes involving mercury compound up to 2025.
- The Minamata Convention on Mercury will be implemented in the context of sustainable development with the objective to protect human health and environment from the anthropogenic emissions and releases of mercury and mercury compounds.
- The Convention protects the most vulnerable from the harmful effects of mercury and also protects the developmental space of developing countries. Therefore, the interest of the poor and vulnerable groups will be protected.
- The Minamata Convention on Mercury will further urge enterprises to move to mercury-free alternatives in products and non-mercury technologies in manufacturing processes.
- This will drive research & development, and promote innovation.
- Till now, the convention has 88 ratifications and 144 signatories including India, which signed it on 30 September 2014.
- India had actively participated in the negotiating process, making significant contributions in finalizing the treaty text but had not ratified it till now. India’s neighbours – Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Nepal and Pakistan – are also signatories to the convention. But only Sri Lanka has ratified it.