GENEVA (ILO News) – The Director of the International Labour Standards Department, Ms Cleopatra Doumbia-Henry, received today the instrument of ratification of the Maritime Labour Convention, 2006 (MLC, 2006) from Ambassador Steffen Smidt, Permanent representative of Denmark to the United Nations. Denmark becomes the third EU member state, after Spain and Bulgaria, to ratify the landmark Maritime Labour Convention, 2006.
In receiving the instrument of ratification, Ms Doumbia-Henry stated: “The ratification of the MLC, 2006, by Denmark reflect the country’s long standing attachment to ILO’s principles and values and its commitment to secure decent working and living conditions for the seafarers employed on board its ships. In ratifying the MLC, 2006, Denmark becomes the third EU member State to implement the EU Council Decision of 2007 authorizing member States to ratify the Maritime Labour Convention, 2006 in the interest of the European Community. This ratification sends a strong message to the remaining 24 EU members to come on board to enable the world’s seafarers to benefit from this Bill of Rights and shipowners from a level-playing field.”
In depositing the instrument, Ambassador Steffen Smidt stated: “Decent working conditions for seafarers and fair competition for shipowners are very important for the truly global industry that shipping constitutes. We hope that many other countries will be able to ratify this Convention as soon as possible and thus enable the Convention to promote the proper quality conditions for shipping worldwide. This would benefit seafarers and shipowners, not only in our own shipping industry, but worldwide.“
Denmark has a long-standing maritime tradition and the shipping industry is one of the most flourishing sectors of the national economy. Denmark ranks 17th among the flag States with the largest registered tonnage, has 615 vessels with total tonnage of 11.8 million gross tons registered under its flag engaged in international trade, thus constituting 1.2 per cent of the world merchant fleet.
With the ratification of the MLC, 2006 by Denmark, 16 ILO member States, representing over 53 per cent of the world gross tonnage of ships, are now parties to this important Convention, which sets out minimum standards and fair working conditions for seafarers worldwide. It is expected that the additional 14 ratifications will be obtained before the end of this year making it possible for the MLC, 2006 to enter into force in 2012.