Ships not compliant with MLC may be detained

photo credits: ABERDEEN SEAFARERS CENTRE and ec.europa.eu

Effective August 7, the Maritime Labour Convention (MLC) may detain North Sea vessels and seagoing commercial ships in port that do not comply with the new regulation and standards.

The MLC protects seafarers by providing standards on their employment rights, working and health care conditions. MLC ensures that seafarers receive basic pay, sick pay, holiday entitlement and medical care. And if seafarers are not satisfied, they can file a complaint against the ship owner or employer.

According to Katie Williams, a shipping and maritime law specialist at Pinsent Masons in Aberdeen, UK’s Maritime and Coastguard Agency could order the detention of nonconforming ships docking at Aberdeen Harbour and other UK ports. And there is also a possibility that a vessel may be detained in foreign ports where a complaint has been filed by a seafarer.

Currently, 63 countries have signed up with the MLC and maritime authorities have ordered vessel detentions in ten cases involving ships in Canada, Denmark, the Russian Federation and Spain that were moving under the flags of Cyprus, Liberia, the Netherlands, Panama and Tanzania.​

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