Agreement to amend Maritime Labour Convention 2006


Governments and maritime representatives, co-ordinated by the International Shipping Federation (ISF) and the International Transport Worker’s Federation (ITF) held a meeting in order to amend certain details regarding the Marine Labour Convention 2006.

Held in Geneva, the first meeting of the Special Tripartite Committee (STC), established under the rules of the convention, hoped to find agreement over the provision of security systems to assist seafarers in the event of abandonment, or in regards to compensation for contractual claims for death or personal injury.

Evidence of such misgiving was provided by footage concerning the case of the B Ladybug, a vessel whose crew had been without welfare or financial support for over twelve months.

The new amendments hope to ensure that such a situation is never repeated.

ISF spokesperson Arthur Bowring, who led the Shipowner Group in the discussions, stated “We believe that the first meeting of the MLC Special Tripartite Committee has been a watershed in the history of the Maritime Labour Convention. The MLC, 2006 is intended to bring social justice and fair competition to the Shipping Industry and the lack of a specific reference to abandonment in the mandatory instruments of ILO and IMO was an omission that needed comprehensive action.”

“The first Special Tripartite Committee considered amendments developed over ten years by the Joint ILO and IMO working group and we believe that the outcome of our work this week is a significant achievement.”

He went on to explain that “Shipowners have a responsibility for seafarers under their contractual employment arrangements, and the problems created when the seafarers are abandoned needed specific legislative measures. The new amendments not only provide that safeguard but also recognise the role to be played by flag states and labour supply states.”

The meeting also clarified a standard A4.2 to ensure that contractual claims for death and personal injury are now appropriately covered.

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