Shortage of seafarers to triple by 2011

November 27, 2009 2:53 pm 

MANILA, Nov. 27 — Shipping industry experts estimates that shortage of seafarers worldwide would triple by 2011.

Aside from the Philippines, Pakistan is another seafaring nation that is in dilemma of producing more ship officers to work in the global fleet.

Currently, there is a shortage of 10,000 seafarers all over the world which will increase up to 30,000 by 2011, while Pakistan is only producing 100 seafarers a year and unable to attract entrants to the shipping industry, according to an industry experts.

It was learned that Pakistan has some 20,000 mariners, who are sailing on foreign vessels remitting about $ 70- million as Pakistan National Shipping Corporation (PNSC) is left with 11 ships in public sector, out of which 10 are 28 years old.

Pakistan Maritime Academy (PMA) produces only 100 cadets a year and Maritime Training Institute is also not contributing enough.

The current officer shortfall of 10,000 is rising to 27,000 by 2015, while Drewry estimates officer shortfall at 34,000 against 498,000 total, rising to 83,900 by 2012 assuming current supply levels and fleet growth at 17 percent.

While commenting on the issue, Member Board of Governor World Maritime University, Malmao, Sweden, Capt. Anwar Shah, said "the International Maritime Organization (IMO) has launched 'go to sea program', but we are in deep slumber."

"We could earn US$ 0.5-billion by training our human resource as India is earning $ 1-billion and the Philippines is pocketing a revenue of $ 3-billion from seafarers remittance," he added.

He said that the PNSC could turn one of its old ships to Maritime Floating Institute to initially train cadet officers preferably in nautical faculty and subsequently engineering cadets, and the vessel may be moored at Karachi, Port Qasim, or at Gizri Creek being exempted from port dues. (PNA) LOR/LBV

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