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As the Year of the Seafarer dawns, the professional standing of seafarer’s worldwide is set to be enhanced by the International Maritime Organisation’s STW Sub-Committee  completion of revisions to the 1995 Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping Convention.

At the IMO’s official launch of the Year of the Seafarer in London last week, Rear Admiral Peter Brady, Director General of the Maritime Authority of Jamaica and chairman of the STW sub-committee, told delegates: “The rapid march of technology and the changing demands of an industry striving to be ever more competitive has meant that the global rules governing the training and certification of today’s and tomorrow’s seafarers had to be revised. It is therefore apt that the revision of the 1978 STCW Convention, as amended and Code should be completed in a year when the efforts and the professionalism of the world’s seafarers are embraced worldwide.”

The STW Sub-Committee members, composed of maritime professionals from throughout the industry, fully understand the professional and social needs of today’s seafarers. “They have the seafarers’ interests close to their heart and this will be evident in the finished product,” said R.Adm Brady. “As regulators of the shipping industry we have a duty to our seafarers to prepare and train them to a high enough standard that is commensurate with their role as a professional and highly valued asset.”

The main revisions are currently being finalised and the revised STCW Convention will be presented for approval to the IMO’s Diplomatic Conference in Manila in June. Once the Convention is adopted the IMO plans to hold a series of seminars and workshops to familiarise seafarers with the new and amended standards.

R.Adm Brady said: “The revised STCW rules will offer all relevant stakeholders the proper instruments by which to recruit, train and retain their sea-staff. At a time when the role of the seafarer is becoming even more respected, this can only be a good thing.”





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