Indian Shipping Industry Applauds 25% increase in issuance of Certificate of Competency (YOY) During First Half of 2016


Representatives of the shipping companies in India have been regularly complaining that the examination system for Merchant Navy officers and engineers in India is too tough and unreasonable at times. Passing percentage of officers and engineers in the competency examinations have been very low. These officers and engineers take very long time to come back for employment to their employers which results in the loss of business not only for Indian manning companies but also causes loss of employment for Indians. In the absence of qualified and certified Indian officers and engineers from India, many multinational employers are forced to employ officers and engineers from several rival countries. But once this business goes out from our management, it does not come back easily, says one industry expert. It is a huge loss for the shipping industry in India. A country which has millions of jobless but educated youth can not afford to waste such lucrative job opportunities.

However, there is a silver lining, it is visible. Examination system is being very closely monitored by Industry experts.

Capt. Sanjay Prashar, M. D. VR Maritime has analysed COC issuance data. In his own words :

We are pleased to see 25% increase in the issuance of seven Major Certificate of Competency as below:

a) Master: 60% Increase , 368 issued in 1st half of 2016 vs 149 issued 1st half 2015.

b) Class 1: 13% Increase , 269 issued in 1st half of 2016 vs 233 issued 1st half 2015.

c) Chief Mate: 29% Increase , 539 issued in 1st half of 2016 vs 385 issued 1st half 2015.

d) Class 2: 18% Increase , 441 issued in 1st half of 2016 vs 360 issued 1st half 2015.

e) 2nd Mates: 16% Increase , 1108 issued in 1st half of 2016 vs 935 issued 1st half 2015.

f) Class 4: 9% Increase , 1256 issued in 1st half of 2016 vs 1146 issued 1st half 2015.

g) ETO : , Engineering Branch. 234 issued in 1st half of 2016 vs 0 issued 1st half 2015.



1. 25% Business growth available for RPSL companies. Nevertheless, Form IIIA will be right parameter to compare and declare how much jobs have been added Year on Year. 

We request release of data of total Seafarers signed on in the 1st half of 2015 vs 1st half of 2016. It will show that employment in Merchant Navy has increased. Good news shouldn't be held back.

2. Engineering Branch: Despite best efforts, we believe that Oral examination need following 

a) DG Approved Institutes who are conducting Class 2 and class 1, We are unable to understand how can a Student be given "Successful Course completion certificate" and then the student fails more than 4 times at MMD. We recommend that internal assessment of MTI for the student be made part of document submission at MMD or be uploaded by Institute in Master Checker. Thus Institute performance on CIP be analysed basis passing percentage of students.

b) Oral exam syllabus be displayed on DG Shipping website.

c) When a student fails, he should be given a copy of the question sheet where Examiner writes the questions asked and why he failed the candidate. This will allow the candidate to prepare better next time and seriousness will be much more in the 2nd attempt.

d) No Mock orals exist for Class 2 and Class 1 at MTI. Pls make it compulsory for mock orals and results of Institute be attached to the profile of the Seafarer in Master Checker. 

Intent is not to loose 25% Jobs for foreign nationalities due to shortage of C/Es and 2/Es.

3. My sincere thanks to Engineering branch for making ETO Examination process simplified and dignified. Large number of COCs issued show the strength of compliance with STCW 2010 at good pace. We are sure now that we won't loose ETO slots to other nationality. Last year Sept 2015, Industry was in taters and now we have real positive start on this account.

4. Nautical: When something is rightly working, please don't bring radical changes. We believe Nautical side issuance of COC and the process are working good. Deck side employment is 25% more in most of the RPSL companies as compared to Engine side. We are not loosing any deck slots to other nationalities. 

5. Out of the box thinking by DG Shipping: Issuance of Watchkeeping , DCE (Oil / Chemical / Gas) and COP (Deck / Engine) has been sublet to credible associations. This has allowed DG Shipping to ease the business as well as save million working hours per year at DG Shipping. Please continue this aspect and given that 50,000 ratings should have been ready for STCW 2010 certification, it's commendable how DG Shipping has done this in record time.


Many experts in the industry feel that Directorate General of Shipping shall release figures of employment of Seafarers. Such data will be useful to navigate the industry in the right direction.

Source:  Capt. Virendra Mishra/TST Newsdesk

Part of this article has been reproduced from a letter written by Capt. Sanjay Prashar, M.D., V R Maritime to the administration.

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