CESMA NEWS, June 2018 Print
Thursday, 13 September 2018 11:25
THE EUROPEAN UNION SHIPMASTER INFORMATION CHRONICLE

REPORT ON ANNUAL CESMA COUNCIL MEETING IN KOTOR, MONTENEGRO ON 4TH MAY 2018

 CESMA News, June 2018

THE COUNCIL IN FRONT OF THE MARITIME MUSEUM
This year the CESMA Annual General Assembly was organized by the Montenegro Shipmasters’ Association in the ancient city of Kotor,
Montenegro, a good example of a well conserved medieval city, full of Roman and Venetian influences and a rich maritime past. This became evident after a visit of the local maritime museum by the CESMA representatives, who had come all the way to Kotor to attend the CESMA AGA 2018. The visit preceded the council meeting in the afternoon. 


INTRODUCTION OF NEW CESMA DEPUTY PRESIDENT
As newly elected Deputy President of CESMA during the 23rd CESMA AGA, I want to thank CESMA members for their vote and to assure you
that I’ll make all I can do to promote our organization as professional organization of European shipmasters.


EU INTERVENES IN ITALIAN STCW ISSUES SEAFARER’S JOBS IN DANGER?
The Italian administration is coming more and more under pressure from the European Commission and Parliament, including maritime
unions and associations, to sort out an unacceptable muddle concerning the way it deals with seafarer certification as stipulated by IMO in the
STCW convention.

(BASED ON ARTICLE IN TELEGRAPH)
Ms. LAURA FERRARA

 

HAPPY INTERNATIONAL DAY OF THE SEAFARER
Each year, on June 25th , the International Maritime Organization marks the Day of the Seafarer as a way to recognize the global seafaring community, as well as seafarers’ contributions to the overall global economy.


FAREWELL TO CAPTAIN NICHOLAS (NICK) COOPER
It is with great sadness that we have to advise that Captain Nicholas Cooper (Nick) passed away on 30th April 2018 at the age of 72.
Nick had a long and successful career both at sea and ashore and was fortunate enough to work around the world, gaining vast experience across the shipping industry. He was passionate about the maritime profession and continued to be a great supporter of modern seafarers. 

 

MINE IN THE PROCESS OF HARMONIZATION OF RECOGNITION OF EU SEAFARERS’ CERTIFICATES
Today, seafarers' training and certification systems in the EU are regulated by Directive 2008/106/EC on minimum level of training of
seafarers and Directive 2005/45/EC on mutual recognition of seafarers' certificates as issued by Member States.

In 2017, the European Commission (EC) has launched the auditing of the Community (EU) legislation on training, certification of seafarers and mutual recognition of seafarers' certificates. In particular, two directives are combined into a new Directive of the European Parliament and of the
Council by amending Directive 2008/106/EC and repealing Directive 2005/45/EC. The provisions of mutual recognition of seafarers' certificates are also being amended. The EC has already developed its proposals, and further changes are being discussed in the Shipping Working Party of the Council.

In short, the new Directive incorporates all the provisions of the STCW Convention with minimal changes, specifies the procedures for
the recognition of third-country certificates and establishes a legislative framework on the mutual recognition between Member
States of all EU-issued seafarers' certificates (the Certificate of Competency (COC), Certificate of Proficiency (COP), Documentary Evidence (DE)). This, of course, affects mutual recognition of all Training Certificates, issued by Training Centres or Maritime Administrations of EU Member States.

At this moment, there is the possibility to harmonize the procedure
for mutual recognition of EU-issued Training Certificates. In my opinion, the best option would be if
all certificates were mutually recognised, without any restrictions and limitations throughout the EU,
regardless of which EU Member State they were issued. It is essential that they be recognized both
for serving on-board EU flagged vessels and for certification and re-certification purposes.

The proposal, currently developed by the EC, does not have a harmonized provision for mutual
recognition of training certificates for seafarers' certification, but ONLY for serving on-board. This
does not address the issue of removing unnecessary administrative and financial burden from
European seafarers.

There is a lack of logic in the proposal. The aim of certification/re-certification is to verify and
ensure the compliance of the seafarer's competence with the provisions of the STCW Convention, in
order to issue a new COC, on the basis of which the seafarer can serve on-board safely.

A COC includes competencies covered by Training (course) certificates, as is seen in tables of the
Chapter II and III of the STCW Code as amended and is also explained in the B-I/2 regulation. The
issuance of any STCW Certificate in any EU country (Training Certificate or COC) already attests the
compliance of relevant competences to work safely at sea. The quality of training is continuously
monitored by EMSA in all Member States. 

If Training Certificates are recognised as good enough for serving on-board EU flag vessel,
demonstrating that the seafarer in these particular competences is capable of ensuring safety at sea,
why would it be questioned in the certification process? Why should the seafarer, in order to be
certified, in many cases have to pass the STCW regulated and strictly supervised (including EMSA)
costly training course again, in case if the course was passed in another Member State and a seafarer
has a valid STCW training certificate?

The European Commission, as an argument, mentions a questionnaire carried out in February 2018,
where the majority of respondents were in favour of the mutual recognition of Training Certificates
only for serving on-board. In my opinion, in the questionnaire, this question has been asked
inconsiderately or even provocatively, as it can be interpreted. It is also not understandable, who
were the 42 respondents to whom the questionnaire was sent. The questionnaire was sent to the
Maritime Administrations and 24 responses were received from them. Two answers came from ETF
and ECSA. Who were those other 16 respondents who determined the result!? Did all respondents
who replied, particularly these 16, are so competent in the STCW Convention and Certification
issues? Why has the principle of proportionality been violated: the same number of respondents
from each Maritime Member State?

Adopting the provision of the renewed Directive, in which there will be no fairly harmonized
procedure for the mutual recognition of seafarers' Training Certificates without restrictions on their
use, additional burden will be created for European seafarers, and it will call for their lack of
understanding and dissatisfaction.

I call on everyone, who has the opportunity to intervene in the process and to achieve a
fair solution, to do so. It's not too late yet, but soon the time will pass and we'll be fighting
the consequences once again.

CAPT. JAZEPS SPRIDZANS
CESMA COUNCIL MEMBER
PRESIDENT LATVIAN SHIPMASTERS’ ASSOCIATION

 

SPLIETHOFF USES SPOS
Dutch ship owner Spliethoff has reduced voyage costs through using weather data from MeteoGroup for ship routeing. It operates a fleet of dry cargo,
heavy lift and project cargo ships, freight roro and yacht transport vessels.

 

NO REGRETS OVER THE INTRODUCTION Of ECDIS?
In a few months from now, the phased carriage requirements for the Electronic Chart Display and Information System (ECDIS) begin to
become a reality and we can just wonder whether all those people who so enthusiastically has thrust us into the E-navigation age with its
mandatory requirements at the International Maritime Organisation, might have the odd second thought about the wisdom of their decision
making.

 

GNSS INTERFENCE AND AUTHENTICATION
Many members of organisations such as navigators on land, at sea or in the airline industry, hydrographers, landmeters and seafarers, who use
GNSS systems, such as GPS, have to deal with this problem.

 

CYBER SECURITY: IMAGINE THIS
It is a normal day at the airport. All of a sudden, the automated check-in machines display a system failure. Travel apps on smartphones stop
functioning. The agents at the check-in counters cannot operate their computers. Travellers can neither check in their luggage, nor pass through
security checks. There are huge lines everywhere. All flights are shown as cancelled on the monitors. For unknown reasons, baggage claim has stopped
working and more than half of the flights must remain on the ground.

 

MARITIME ENGLISH PUT TO THE FEASIBILITY AND DESIRABILITY OF SETTING GLOBAL STANDARDS FOR MARITIME ENGLISH
As the lingua franca at sea, English has been designated by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) as the language for
professional communication on board merchant navy ships.

 

NVKK CELEBRATES ITS 75TH ANNIVERSARY
The Nederlandse Vereniging van Kapiteins ter Koopvaardij NVKK, (the Dutch Shipmasters’ Association), celebrated its 75th anniversary at the premises of acht Club “The Maas”. In Rotterdam. Many guests, including HRH Princess Margriet of The Netherlands and representatives from the Dutch and Belgian maritime field, came to Rotterdam to congratulate NVKK.

 

VISIT TO MV ROSANNA IN KOPER (SLOVENIA)
It is the intention of the CESMA board to be in close contact with the active seagoing shipmasters. In this way we may find out what is important in the
eyes of the actual membership of CESMA. The best way is to go on board of their ships and look at the real situation. We have however to be careful not to bother shipmasters, because their busiest hours are after arrival and before departure.

 

CHRISTIAN DUPONT RECEIVES AWARD
During the SAGMAS meeting on 28th February at the premises of the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) in Lisbon, Mr. Christian Dupont ,
received the award of Chevalier of Merite Maritime, presented by Mr. Philippe Roux of the French Administration.

 

SOMETHING FOR SHIPMASTERS? HOW TO DRIVE PERFORMANCE AND CULTURE THROUGH LEADERSHIP, IN THE MARITIME INDUSTRY
This 2-day program will provide both maritime business managers and leaders with a comprehensive introduction to and understanding of how to
approach leadership in order to drive performance and the creation of the desired culture. Leadership is proven to be the strongest driver for
performance and culture. In a world that is changing at an ever-faster pace, not least in the maritime industry where challenges and opportunities comes in bundles, your Leadership will be your greatest differentiator.

RESOLUTIONS FROM 23rd CESMA AGA ON 5th MAY 2018 AT THE CATTARO HOTEL IN KOTOR, MONTENEGRO.

Resolution nr. 1: Criminalisation of seafarers.
The 23th Annual General Assembly in Kotor, again noted that the problem of criminalisation of
seafarers and of shipmasters in particular, continues to be a matter of great concern. CESMA
urgently requests ship owners and/or operators to always provide legal assistance for masters,
serving on their ships, in case of an incident as a consequence of which they are detained by local
authorities, until, at least, a verdict has been pronounced. Moreover masters are urgently advised to
consider taking a risk insurance.

Resolution nr. 2: Piracy.
The Assembly again discussed the problem of piracy against ships in various parts of the world, with
attacks on ships in the West Africa area still frequent and violent, while piracy in seas around Somalia
seems to increase lately. CESMA no longer resists the use of armed security teams, either military or
private but also advocates the use of non-violent measures which become more and more
sophisticated as an alternative, in combination with BMP 4 practices. Under all circumstances the
authority of the master should be efficaciously maintained, except when fire-arms have to be used.
CESMA also insists on exact rules of engagements to be observed under all circumstances.

Resolution nr. 3: Fatigue and safe manning.
The Assembly again discussed the problem of fatigue in the maritime industry. The requirement of a
minimum of three certified bridge watch keepers, including the master, on each seagoing vessel of
500 GT and more, is still supported by CESMA, although we see improvement due to better controls
by some flag states (Spain) and Port State Control officers. It continues to urge Port State Control
officers to intensify verification of work and rest periods during shipboard inspections.
CESMA Supports the results of the Martha project.

Resolution no. 4: Safety of roro- and large passenger ships.
The Assembly again discussed the safety of roro- and large passenger ships as well as car carriers.
Disembarking a great number of passengers and crew in an emergency situation continues to be a
great concern. Damage stability as a result of flooded decks and/or holds caused by an accident, is
still not sufficiently observed, also with regard to new buildings. Recently ordered vessels seem to
show improvements due to lessons learned from the “Costa Concordia” accident.

Resolution no. 5: Mooring accidents.
The Assembly again expresses its concern about the increase of serious mooring accidents on board
and ashore. Reasons discussed are the increase in sizes of vessels, lay-out of harbours, mooring
equipment used and the ability and number of crew at the mooring stations. Another issue is
disturbances in communication due to language problems. .

Resolution nr. 6: Employment of EU seafarers.
Following the growing shortage of EU officers, employed on EU flag ships, also due to complicated
procedures by some administrations regarding training and certification, the Assembly again urges
EU administrations to support their respective seafarers by recognizing certificates issued by all EU
administrations and enforcing simpler issue/renewal procedures for certificates of EU officers.
CESMA again appeals to EU ship owners to create opportunities for young EU officers to complete
their practical education and training and obtain their certificates. In this way maritime knowledge
and experience within the EU maritime industry can be maintained. All efforts should be employed to
interest young people in the EU to choose for a maritime career.

Resolution nr. 7: Illegal immigrants in the Mediterranean.
The Assembly again noted with concern the situation in the Mediterranean where illegal immigrants
try to reach Europe by using unseaworthy craft which sometimes, due to overcrowding and bad
condition, require assistance from merchant navy vessels nearby. According to the SOLAS
Convention, ships are obliged to render assistance and take the immigrants on board. This could lead
to dangerous situations whereby the crew is outnumbered by the quantity of immigrants. Moreover
their intentions and medical condition are unknown, as most ships have no professional medical staff
on board. As a consequence, vessel and crew could be endangered. The Assembly again wants to
convey its concern to the European Commission and Parliament, as well as the IMO, in this respect.

Resolution nr. 8: Future of simulator training in the EU maritime industry.
The Assembly again underlines the importance of simulator training in the maritime industry.
However it urges EU administrations to standardise exchanging of practical education and training
periods by simulator training as “sea time equivalent”.

Resolution nr. 9: Reduction of paperwork on board.
The Assembly urgently requests governments and authorities to intervene in reducing the many
documents to be completed by vessels before and between entering ports, as they severely increase
the working load on board, particularly of the master, who is primarily responsible for the safe
navigation of the vessel, especially in confined waters.

Resolution nr. 10: Safe construction of Very Large Ore Carriers (VLOC’s).
The Assembly, noting with concern the large number of seafarers missing at shipwrecks of VLOC’s,
asks international maritime authorities, including the European Union, to not close their eyes on a
kind of fatality that could convict seafarers aboard this vessel type to death. It urgently requests the
European Union and its member states to push the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) to
create clear legislation on VLOC’s. This includes the prohibition of conversion of Very Large Crude
Carriers (VLCC’s) into VLOC’s, as well as their current operation. The Assembly also expressed
concern about the liquefaction of certain bulk cargoes, such as bauxite ore, on bulk carriers, causing
this type of vessels to suddenly capsize during their voyage and sink with all crew on board lost.

Resolution nr. 11: Decrease of traditional navigational skills.
The Assembly noted again, with great concern, the decrease of traditional navigational skills among
younger shipmasters and officers on board. Recent development of electronic equipment facilitates
position fixing by satellite systems. However latest breaches in cyber security, such as jamming of
GPS, raise the importance of a backup system.
CESMA calls for relevant action by the European Commission and IMO to maintain proper legislation
regarding safe watch keeping and use of satellite systems together with traditional navigational skills.
In this process, CESMA encourages maritime and qualification institutes to pay attention in their
curriculums to traditional navigational skills. Also to the ability to change over in good time in case of
a GPS failure. CESMA also encourages the present generation of seafarers to use all efforts, via
mentoring on board or any other means, to transfer their knowledge.

Resolution nr. 12: Harmonizing of seafarer’s certificates in the EU.
CESMA urgently requests the European Parliament and Commission, as well as all maritime EU
Member States, to provide proper initiatives to harmonize procedures for training certificates of
seafarers. These include certificates of training and refreshment courses, issued by EU based training
institutions which should be recognized by all EU member states, both for service on EU and foreign
flag vessels, in order to facilitate mobility of seafarers and reduce financial burden.

Kotor (Montenegro) 5th May 2018


IN 2019, THE CESMA ANNUAL GENERAL ASSEMBLY WILL BE ORGANIZED IN ANTWERP, BELGIUM AT THE INVITATION OF THE ROYAL BELGIUM SEAMEN’S COLLEGE ON 9TH and 10TH MAY (TENTATIVE)