Home / Shipping News / International Shipping News / Asian Ship Owners Warn About the Lack of Crew Members in the Future

Asian Ship Owners Warn About the Lack of Crew Members in the Future

On 21st April 2022, the 27th Interim Meeting of the Seafarers Committee (SC), Asian Shipowners’ Association (ASA), was held virtually. The Meeting was attended by Mr. Yuichi Sonada, ASA Secretary-General, Mr. Zhang Shouguo, Executive Vice Chairman of China Shipowners’ Association (CSA) and more than 30 other delegates from ASA member associations of China, Chinese Taipei, Hong Kong, Japan, Korea and FASA as represented by the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam. The ASA Competition Law Competition Statement was announced at the meeting to ensure full compliance with all applicable competition laws throughout the entire programme.

Development of Asian seafarers
The Committee is pleased to note that administrations of ASA members are continuing their efforts as ever before to attract more young people to seek a sea-going career, which will greatly assist in the continued promotion of the supply and employment of Asian seafarers.

In some Asian countries and regions, however, there are fewer and fewer young people willing to work as seafarers. As a result, the number of third mates and fourth engineer officers is decreasing significantly, and the subsequent supply of seafarers is insufficient. Undoubtedly, the epidemic will be accelerating the loss of seafarers, especially young seafarers.

This situation would result in difficult development, retention and employment of competent seafarers in future. Therefore, more efforts need to be made by all the stakeholders of the shipping industry.

The impact of Covid-19 Pandemic on seafarers
Among the topics discussed, ASA SC recognized that, the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic has led to travel restrictions in many ports of the world, caused difficulties in crew change and ship operations, and resulted in the decline of seafarers’ social status, wellbeing and willingness of going to sea. Meanwhile, extended period of service on board and denied access to shore leave and medical care in some ports during the Covid-19 Pandemic have increased seafarers’ mental health problem, which has jeopardized seafarers’ wellbeing as enshrined in the MLC 2006.

The Seafarers’ Committee therefore urges the stakeholders of the shipping industry to take measures to ensure seafarers’ welfare in according to the MLC 2006, thereby attracting and retaining seafarers to remain in the industry.

The application of digitalization in the shipping industry
ASA SC further recognized the ever-increasing importance of digitalization and intelligence, their application and role in the shipping industry and, in particular, their impact on seafarers. ASA SC noted that smart ships of certain autonomy degrees have been built and put into operation for a trial purpose in some countries and that the International Maritime Organization is formulating the roadmap of modernizing its regulatory instruments in order to accommodate the operation of smart ships. ASA SC will keep a close watch on the development in this area and maintain it as a standing agenda item for consideration in the future sessions.

The ASA Seafarers’ Committee (SC) is a forum for the ASA member Associations to discuss issues relating to seafarers’ development, capacity-building, welfare, wellbeing and other entitlements in accordance with MLC 2006 and STCW Convention, both as amended.
Source: Asian Shipowners’ Association (ASA)

Recent Videos

Hellenic Shipping News Worldwide Online Daily Newspaper on Hellenic and International Shipping