Ships at sea

ICS Publishes New Edition of Guidelines on MLC Convention

To stay up-to-date on changing regulations, the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) has launched a third edition of its Guidelines on the Application of the ILO Maritime Labour Convention (MLC). Among other things, the Guidelines now address provision of financial security in case of seafarer abandonment and prevention of harassment and bullying.

Focused on today’s MLC, the publication covers all amendments made to the Convention since it entered into force in 2013. It also contains practical advice, information and key learnings from industry bodies at the heart of the shipping community.


Natalie Shaw, Director of Employment Affairs at ICS says: 'These new Guidelines provide a framework to help all involved in the industry understand how the MLC works. Companies can use them to assist in developing their own policies and procedures and incorporate them in their working practices.' 

New in Edition 3

  • Mandatory arrangements for the provision of financial security to address cases of seafarer abandonment.
  • Changes to employment agreements to address piracy.
  • Measures to prevent harassment and bullying.
  • New ICS/International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) welfare guidelines.
  • Implementation of health and safety provisions.

The new Guidelines contain helpful information on common issues arising from inspection processes and procedures used by various Port State Control (PSC) authorities. Support materials developed by various parties, such as the International Labour Organization (ILO) and ITF, have also been included. 

Changes in Technology

The section on welfare provision has been fully updated in line with increasing digitalisation and the changes in technology that affect the seafarer’s workplace. 

Hard and Digital Copy of the MLC

A copy of the full MLC guidelines and a number of other useful documents are included, helping shipowners meet the requirement to carry a copy of the Convention on board. A complementary digital version is also included, containing a portfolio of additional information to assist shipowners to effectively apply the MLC on board their vessels.   

Guidelines on the Application of the ILO Maritime Labour Convention is available from maritime booksellers, or through the ICS website.

Author: Mariska Buitendijk

Mariska Buitendijk is one of SWZ|Maritime's journalists as well as the magazine's copy editor.

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