Merchant Shipping Amendment Bill [B12-2015]

Call for comments opened 26 May 2015 Share this page:

Submissions are now closed (since 12 June 2015)


The Portfolio Committee on Transport invites you to submit written comments on the Merchant Shipping Amendment Bill [B12-2015].

The Bill seeks to amend the Merchant shipping Act, 1951, to give effect to the Maritime Labour Convention, 2006 and the Work in Fishing Convention, 2007.

In addition to the written comments, please indicate your interest in making a verbal presentation to the Committee.

Comments can be emailed to Ms Valerie Carelse at [email protected] by no later than Friday, 12 June 2015 at 12h00.

Enquiries can be directed to Ms Valerie Carelse on tel (021) 403 3272 or cell 083 709 8445.

Issued by Ms D P Magadzi, MP, Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee on Transport.

The Bill seeks to give effect to the Maritime Labour Convention, 2006 (‘‘MLC, 2006’’) and the Work in Fishing Convention, 2007 (‘‘C188’’) and to provide for matters connected therewith. The MLC, 2006 and C188 was adopted under the auspices of the International Labour Organization (‘‘ILO’’), a United Nations body aimed at promoting rights at work, encouraging decent employment opportunities, enhancing social protection and strengthening dialogue on work-related issues. The C188 addresses amongst other things the responsibilities of fishing vessel owners and skippers for the safety of the fishers on board and the safety of the vessels; minimum age for work on board fishing vessels and for assignment to certain types of activities; medical examination and certification required for work on fishing vessels; manning and hours of rest; crew lists; fishers work agreements; repatriations; recruitment and placement of fishers and the use of private employment agencies; payment of fishers; on board accommodation and food; medical care at sea; occupational safety and health; social security and protection in the case of work-related sickness, injury or death. The MLC, 2006 provides for a set of comprehensive rights and duties of seafarers at work. The MLC, 2006 also aims to achieve minimum working conditions for seafarers by covering a wide range of matters including working hours, health and safety, crew accommodation, seafarers’ welfare and seafarers’ contractual agreements. The Government of the Republic of South Africa through the Department of Labour and the Department of Transport (‘‘the Department’’) participated in the deliberations wherein the MLC, 2006 and C188 were adopted. Most of the world trade is carried out on ships and seafarers are essential to international trade and the international economy and trade system. The new labour standard consolidates and updates more than 68 international labour standards related to the Maritime sector adopted over the last 80 years. The MLC, 2006 and C188 has been designed to become a global instrument known as the ‘‘fourth pillar’’ of the international regulatory regime for quality shipping, complementing the key Conventions of the International Maritime Organization, such as the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea, the International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers and the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships. The Department has been working jointly with the Department of Labour on the ratification of the MLC, 2006 and C188 which will ensure global protection of the rights of seafarers and decent working and living conditions for seafarers. The Republic has ratified the MLC, 2006 and C188 on 7 June 2013 by depositing the instrument of ratification with the Director-General of the ILO. The implementation of the MLC, 2006 and C188 is a two-fold process in that the Department of Labour is responsible for attending to all the necessary procedures to ensure ratification of the MLC, 2006 and C188 and the Department ensuring that domestic legislation is in place to enforce the provisions of the MLC, 2006 and C188 that relate to the Department. The Bill seeks to amend the Merchant Shipping Act, 1951 (Act No. 57 of 1951) (‘‘the Act’’), in order to give effect to the MLC, 2006 and C188.