Shipping minister hears Nautilus concerns ahead of London International Shipping Week

7 September 2017

Nautilus held 'positive' talks with former shipping minister John Hayes in 2017 on a series of policy issues affecting the employment and training of UK seafarers.

In an hour-long meeting ahead of London International Shipping Week 2017, the Union questioned the minister on subjects including progress on the 2015 Maritime Growth Study recommendations and industry calls for improvements in the Support for Maritime Training (SMarT) scheme.

Nautilus general secretary Mark Dickinson reiterated the Union's Jobs, Skills and the Future campaign call for a review of the system for issuing UK Certificates of Equivalent Competency and Mr Hayes said he was willing to reconsider the subject.

Mr Dickinson also raised concerns over unfair competition and exploitation in the North Sea and ferry sectors and urged the minister to secure tighter controls over the application of the National Minimum Wage and work permit requirements for seafarers serving on ships operating in UK waters.

The Union also discussed the potential impact of Brexit on the British shipping industry and Mr Dickinson stressed the need for the government to safeguard British maritime jobs, health and safety, and employment and environmental standards when the UK leaves the European Union.

This was a very positive and constructive meeting, and the minister was receptive and supportive of the points that we brought up. We believe our case for action is overwhelming and we remain hopeful that it will bear fruit very soon. Nautilus general secretary, Mark Dickinson