GENEVA (ILO News) – On 20 July 2012, the Government of Cyprus deposited with the International Labour Office the instrument of ratification of the Maritime Labour Convention, 2006 (MLC, 2006). Cyprus is the 29th ILO member State and the ninth EU member State to have ratified the Convention. Cyprus has registered under its flag over 1,000 merchant vessels weighing nearly 21 million GT, representing some 2 percent of the world gross tonnage.
In transmitting the instrument of ratification, Mr. George Papageorgiou, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Labour and Social Insurance, stated: “Cyprus is proud to be included in the first 29 ILO member states and the first 9 members of the European Union to have ratified ΜLC, 2006 and to help promote in this way, the protection of the rights of workers in this significant part of the economy. For Cyprus, a successful international shipping centre which is renowned for its high quality services and standards of safety, the ratification of the MLC, 2006 is a vital tool for improving the working and living standards of seafarers. We hope that many more countries will be able to ratify this important Convention and achieve decent working conditions for maritime workers and a fair competition for ship-owners, worldwide”.
In welcoming the ratification of the MLC, 2006 by Cyprus, Ms. Cleopatra Doumbia-Henry, Director of the International Labour Standards Department, stated: “The ratification of the MLC, 2006 by Cyprus is a further powerful message that the world’s maritime nations are determined to blow life into this remarkable set of rules designed to improve seafarers’ working and living conditions and to guarantee conditions of fair competition for shipowners. The Government of Cyprus has been exemplary all these years in actively participating in preparatory meetings and demonstrating leadership for the promotion of the Convention. I understand that the Department of Merchant Shipping (DMS) has already issued a detailed circular informing owners, managers, representatives of ships under Cyprus flag and recognized organizations of the requirements of the Cyprus Maritime Administration regarding the implementation of the MLC, 2006. The Convention is practically now ready to set sail for its long-awaited voyage.”
With Cyprus’ ratification, 29 ILO members representing now more than 58.5 per cent of the world gross tonnage of ships have ratified the MLC, 2006. To come into force, the Convention requires ratification by at least 30 members with a total share of at least 33 percent of the world gross tonnage of ships. The gross tonnage element was achieved in 2009. It is expected that the 30th ratification to achieve the 30/33 formula will be registered in the coming months, which will enable the Convention to come into effect 12 months later, in 2013.