Intermanager on Ship Officer Qualifications

Ship officer qualifications should be regarded as the equivalent of a university degree in the opinion of InterManager president Alastair Evitt. That would help a great deal in improving the public image of shipping and encouraging more young people to choose a career at sea. The industry’s reputation has taken a dent as a result of the Costa Concordia caualty, Mr Evitt acknowledged, with the fact that 99% of all cargo arrives safely never making the news.

The head of InterManager, claimed that officer training must be seen as the same as a university education. He warned employers against the temptation to cut back on officer training. According to Mr. Evitt training should be the most important investment in ensuring safe and efficient onboard operations. The alternative is the cost of an accident.

Mr Evitt also commented on the “harbingers of doom” who have been forecasting crewing shortages for the last 20 years. This has been allayed to a large extent by the arrival onto the international market of seafarers from former Soviet Union countries and, more recently, Chinese seafarers.

However, with the exception of some Southeast Asian countries such as Vietnam and Cambodia, “there are no lost tribes of future seafarers out there”, said Mr Evitt. Valuing seafarers “is a first step in attracting new recruits to our industry,” he told the ITF conference.

In order to attract the best entrants to the industry, there should be adequate offers of a defined career path by either rising through the ranks or, indeed, to progress from ship to shore. Shipping also has to appeal to the “computer age” generation, and accommodate their requirements on board so that they can use Facebook, Twitter and other social media means of communication.

Source: Intermanager


  1. What is wrong with ex Soviet countries seafarers?

    • There is nothing wrong with ex Soviet countries seafarers. On the contrary in this post the head of Intermanager states that through the introduction of seafarers from former Soviet Union countries, crew shortages onboard merchant vessels have been avoided.

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