Image credit: Rex/Olycom SPA

The wreck of Costa Concordia will start being removed from close to the Italian island of Giglio in June ahead of the ship being demolished.

Twelve ports are reportedly in contention to handle the break up, including Middlesbrough and others in Italy, Norway, Turkey, France and Holland, Sky News reported.

The job of dismantling and recycling the vessel has been put out to tender which is being overseen by London Offshore Consultants.

It is hoped the salvage team will have made a decision on the ship’s final destination by early March.

The 114,000-ton ship was hauled upright from its partially submerged position in September in a 19-hour operation.

It is expected to be towed away from the Mediterranean island by the summer and eventually broken up for scrap.

Costa Cruises’ chief executive Michael Thamm said: “We are very confident that we can remove this ship within the month of June. This is not very far away – and then a great job will be done.”

He said the company would maintain ownership of the vessel “until the very last moment”, until the wreck is demolished later this year.

The full cost of the completed salvage operation was expected to reach around €600 million, he added.

Italian environment minister Andrea Orlando and experts disclosed the details of the next phase of the operation at a news conference in Rome.

Concordia’s captain Francesco Schettino is on trial for alleged manslaughter, causing the shipwreck and abandoning ship in January 2012.