We MUST future proof our industry, says InterManager

InterManager, the third party and in-house ship management association, has urged the maritime industry not to neglect its duty in ensuring a sustainable future.

Speaking at CrewConnect Global, InterManager’s President Bjørn Jebsen and Secretary-General Capt Kuba Szymanski spoke of the necessity of working closely with key decision makers to maintain a resilient industry.

Addressing delegates during his session, Mr Jebsen said: “If we look at the overall shipping industry we can assume that the world fleet will continue to grow, which means an increased requirement for skilled and competent seafarers. This may present itself with a few problems, though. With the downturn in the industry, shipping companies are cutting costs and may not make the required investment in manpower for the future.

“This is being seen through maritime schools, which are struggling to provide the education to give young people the training they need to develop the skills and competence our industry requires. We must work together to address a maritime education system that is struggling to meet even the existing requirements.”

The notion of ensuring a sustainable future was further heighten by Capt Kuba Szymanski, who chaired a panel on the findings of Project MARTHA; a fatigue study co-ordinated between InterManager and other industry bodies. “We cannot ignore the findings, so what ship managers do next is crucial; whether that be reducing bureaucracy or listening to vessel’s staff comments and suggestions,” Capt Szymanski said.

“If fatigue is not addressed soon, seafaring could be in jeopardy of becoming an out-of-touch profession. That is why it is vital the whole industry works together, starting today,” he added.