(Luxembourg, ILO News) – The Commissioner of Maritime Affairs and the Maritime Public Registry of Luxembourg celebrated the 20th anniversary on 6 January 2011, highlighting the importance of quality shipping and for the application of labour standards to shipping.
The Minister of Economy and Trade, Mr Jeannot Krecké, said that “the Luxembourg flag will have to be a flag of quality”. He expressed his commitment to International Labour Standards and said that Luxembourg might be ready to ratify the ILO Maritime Labour Convention, 2006 (MLC, 2006) by May 2011.
“I am aware that Luxembourg has been working hard to ensure that it can move forward to ratification and effective implementation of this innovative new labour Convention, which consolidates and modernizes 37 of the existing ILO maritime labour Conventions, many of which are, for the most part, already applied by Luxembourg”, said Ms Cleopatra Doumbia-Henry, Director of the ILO International Labour Standards Department.
Since it became a member of the International Labour Organization in 1920, the Grand Duchy has ratified a total of 98 of the 188 ILO Conventions, including 19 maritime labour Conventions.
Ms Doumbia-Henry recalled that the MLC, 2006 is unique as it is the first labour Convention to provide for national certification systems for compliance with labour and social standards. “This is itself an important step as it positions labour and social rights squarely in the mainstream of other regulatory matters in this sector such as safety, security and environmental protection”.
This year will mark a number of other significant maritime anniversaries. In particular, next month will be the fifth anniversary of the adoption of the Maritime Labour Convention, 2006 on 23 February 2006 by the 94th International Labour Conference at its 10th maritime Session.
The year 2011 might also mark the achievement of the entry into force requirements of the MLC, 2006. As of today, the Convention has been ratified by eleven countries and nineteen more ratifications must be obtained to achieve the entry into force formula. In 2007 the European Union invited Members to ratify the Convention by the end of December 2010 and the agreement between the social partners in the EU, an agreement that will become a Directive once the Convention enters into force.
“Despite the turbulence, on many levels, of the years since 2006, for all countries, particularly with economic stability matters at the forefront, I am aware that all EU countries and countries in other regions have still been able to steadily make progress on moving forward to implement the MLC, 2006 with a view to ratification by 2011” Ms Doumbia-Henry commented.