ITF Cautiously Approves MLC Preparations

Press Release
Thursday, January 24, 2013

The ITF (International Transport Workers’ Federation) gives guarded thumbs-up to preparations for implementation of Maritime Labour Convention (MLC).

As Malta becomes the 34th ILO member state to ratify the Maritime Labour Convention (MLC) 2006,  the ITF (International Transport Workers’ Federation) gave its cautious approval to the progress made across the shipping world to prepare for the convention’s all important coming into force August 2013.

The ITF is actively monitoring efforts to prepare for the MLC’s entry into operation – including its own. It believes that the legislation, the first worldwide bill of rights for seafarers, can make a positive difference to everyone serving at sea, irrespective of their nationality and the flag the ship they are on is flying.

Dave Heindel, chair of the ITF seafarers’ section, commented: “The ITF has been involved from the birth of the MLC and so it’s only right that we ensure that we and our fellow trade unions are making all necessary efforts to help it achieve the success it deserves. For us that has meant rigorous monitoring, and projects to explain and support the legislation in action – for example in the way we work together with port state control.”

He continued: “The results of that monitoring suggest that satisfactory progress is being made by the majority of organisations and companies to prepare for August. That includes the way the ILO is spreading the word about the need for preparedness, and positive feedback from port state control about readiness for implementation. We were also glad to see the cluster of ratifications recently, including Greece and Finland this month.
We are also continuously pushing for further ratifications.  Whether they are major port states or flag states, it is vital that everyone involved in shipping has ratified.”

The MLC’s entry into force will be the culmination of over 10 years of collective effort by the ILO and its social partners, which, in this case, have been the ITF, representing seafarers and their unions, and the ISF (International Shipping Federation), representing employers.

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