1. Covid-19 has had devastating effects on seafarers, has exposed the structure and governance cracks of the shipping industry and too many flag States have turned a blind eye to the plight of seafarers. We commit to: 

1.1. Promote the creation of a European Maritime Space and fight against social dumping, unfair competition in the maritime transport sector and the continued growth of flags of convenience. 

1.2. Defend safe and decent employment of seafarers operating on-board European flagged vessels and promote implementation of their social rights with the continuous improvement of the minimum standards set out in the Maritime Labour Convention, 2006 as amended and the Directive 2009/13/EC. 

1.3. Defend and guarantee high quality training and certification standards of European seafarers, notably young seafarers. 

1.4. Promote greater diversity in the maritime transport sector with specific reference to the participation of women and new talents. 

Section Priorities 2022 - 2027 

Shape the Future of Transport Work 

2. Campaign for a fair and Sustainable Shipping Campaign with a seafarer centred just transition: Implementation of the concept of an EU maritime space for shipping services which tackles social dumping and with decent terms and conditions for all crew. 

3. Continue to support the global campaign to eradicate flags of convenience. 

4. Improve social rights for European seafarers and increase leverage for seafarers’ unions to enforce them. 

5. Push for Maritime Training and Education in Europe to be better adapted to future (and current) challenges and enhance career prospects and developments. 

The Future of the ETF 

6. Strengthen occupational health and safety policies, improve women workers’ and young seafarers’ safety and health. 

7. Secure a strong and functional Maritime Transport section. 

The ETF as an Industrial and Organising Force 

8. Respond to land-sea consolidation and vertical integration in shipping and their effects on workplaces’ practices. 

Concrete Objectives and Actions 2022-2027 

Shape the Future of Transport Work 

9. Objective: Based on the lessons learned from Covid-19 and on the findings and recommendations of the Social Study (2020), elements of the European Maritime Space concept have been taken forward with shipowners and EU policy makers. 

9.1. Discussions with ECSA and European institutions regarding lessons learned from Covid-19, with the ambition to initiate policy and display a revamped European Maritime Transport Strategy, to support job creation, recruitment and retention of European-domiciled seafarers. 

9.2. Meetings (online) with national administrations and contacts with the permanent representations. Actions towards future EU Presidencies. 

10. Objective: Continue to support the ITF global campaign to eradicate flags of convenience. 

10.1. Promote transparency and accountability in shipping together with the ITF, through the promotion of a genuine link as required by UNCLOS and the continuous improvement of the MLC 2006, as amended. 

11. Objective: Affiliates are more empowered to enforce comprehensive social protection for their members. 

11.1. Develop materials on initiatives (toolkit) based on findings of analysis of European seafarers’ social security coverage (WMU project) and possible complementary research. 

11.2. Organisation of webinars on social security protection. 

11.3. Address social protection deficit and support of any EC initiative to broaden social protection for EU seafarers and ensure equality of treatment between seafarers and shoreworkers (Meetings with EC, online meetings with national administrations). 

11.4. Continuous request to EC to follow up on its obligation to report to Council and EP on the implementation and application of Regulation 5.3 of the MLC regarding labour supplying countries (pursuant to Article 6.2 of Council Directive 2013/54/EU). 

12. Objective: Contribution to the development of a sectoral skills strategy. 

12.1. Continue active participation in the ongoing SKILLSEA project (until end of 2022) and ensure follow-up to modernise maritime education and training systems and curricula in line with technological change. Digitalization and automation will increase the demand for highly skilled crews. Reskilling, upskilling and new skills will be required. 

12.2. Feed into EU submission to IMO regarding possible STCW revision (cooperation with ITF Secretariat). 

12.3. Use of new and alternative fuels requires a mandatory program of training and refresher training. Safety standards are especially important. Should be included also in STCW revision. 

12.4. Gather information regarding (conditions for) state aid given to shipowners and the creation of incentives for training and quality jobs. 

12.5. Ensure the views and concerns of maritime professionals are taken into account in seeking a just transition to the green economy/decarbonisation of shipping.

The Future of the ETF 

13. Objective: More attention to OSH, diversity inc. women seafarers and young seafarers. 

13.1. Take the most from the on-going WESS project. Participation to working group meetings, follow-up of research and studies. 

14. Objective: Attracting and retaining more women and young people both ashore and at sea, by addressing their major concerns. 

14.1. Align and exchange with ITF work, in particular on sustainable shipping- dedicated meetings and correspondence. 

14.2. Meetings (mainly online) of the working group on safety, security and wellbeing of ships’ crews to prepare input into SSDC and EU initiatives. Further the work on mental health of seafarers. 

14.3. Meeting with Dockers Section regarding safety on ships. 

14.4. Maritime youth project 

15. Objective: Coordination of the Section is guaranteed; discussion, exchange and agreement by affiliates on different priority and strategic topics. 
15.1. Ensure coordination between the different meetings of the section and ITF Seafarers’ section meetings. 
15.2. Develop activities in the context of the European maritime alliance of Dockers and Seafarers. 
15.3. Highest level of engagement of ETF affiliates in the ongoing work of the Section. 

The ETF as an Industrial and Organising force. 

16. Objective: Respond to the changing nature of the maritime industry along the supplychain and be better prepared to respond to a crisis. 

16.1. Promote inclusive, responsible and sustainable workplace practices through workers’ network, further research and alliances across sectors. 

Adopted by the ETF Maritime Transport Section on 15 December 2021.


Fisheries Section Work Programme 2022 – 2027 

1. Strengthen the social dimension and objectives of the Common Fisheries Policy, preserve and improve the working conditions of European and migrant fishers, improve the external dimension of the Common Fisheries Policies by linking imports with social criteria, defend the fishers’ revenues and sustainability through direct action, social dialogue and alliances with stakeholders. 

Section Priorities 2022/2027 
Shape the Future of Transport Work 

2. Demand a stronger social dimension of the CFP, with social criteria and indicators. 
3. Defend fishers’ jobs in the EU and working conditions of European and migrant fishers 

The Future of the ETF. 
4. Enhanced regionalisation of the section work, to better respond to the priorities and concerns of the different regions and affiliates. 

The ETF as an Industrial and Organising force. 
5. Improve attractiveness of the sector, which is facing a serious demographic problem. 

Concrete Objectives and Actions 2022 – 2027 
Shape the Future of Transport Work. 

6. Objectives: Advocacy for full development of the social dimension of the CFP 

6.1. Political campaign in the institutions, Advisory Councils and social dialogue for proper space, attention and resources dedicated to the social dimension of the CFP. 

6.2. Evaluation of possible alliances with other stakeholders to jointly support campaigns on shared priorities. 

6.3. Continue the coordination of the work done by the Section in Advisory Councils. 

7. Objectives: Call for wide ratification of international standards 
7.1. Continue the joint work in the social dialogue for ratification and implementation ILO C188 

7.2. Call for transposition in EU legislation of Convention STCW-F 

8. Objectives: Defend fishers’ jobs in the EU 
8.1. Political campaign to get social sustainability duly taken into account by EU institutions when measures to preserve the resources are taken. 

8.2. Monitor preservation of profitability of the sector, as in some regions jobs are decreasing through the Advisory Councils. 

8.3. Advocate in political campaign, in the social dialogue and in cooperation with ITF, for the defence of the sector in the EU as such, against relegation of fisheries to imports of doubtful origin, including labour abuses. 

8.4. Monitor the developments of the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on fisheries, in particular on employment. Political campaign to have fishers effectively recognised as essential workers and their mobility guaranteed in time of crisis. 

8.5. Advocate for measures to increase the transparency and a level playing field for the EU fisheries labour market. 

9.1. Continue the political campaign to stress the role fishers can have in reduce marine litter. 

9.2. Through social dialogue and as ETF in its own right, monitor the development of offshore wind farms and its consequences on fisheries. 

9.3. Political campaign to raise awareness on the risks that the reform of fisheries’ fuel taxation can have on jobs and salaries. 

10.1. Cooperation with ITF to monitor and protect the conditions and expose the abuses on migrant workers in the EU, in third countries, and on EU fleets fishing in third countries. 
10.2. Demand through joint action in the social dialogue an EU rule that bans imports of fish products in the EU from non-EU fleets/countries where there is evidence of labour abuses. 

9. Objectives: Pursue a coherence between measures to counter climate change and fisheries 

10. Objectives: Improving the conditions of migrant fishers      

The Future of the ETF    
11. Objectives: Better shape the Section work according to the regions and affiliates priorities 

11.1. Develop section priorities on different levels, taking into account the state of fisheries and employment in different regions. 

11.2. Explore the conditions for a dialogue with fishers’ trade union from North Africa and Eastern Mediterranean countries. 

11.3. Monitor the socio-economic consequences of Brexit for the relevant areas. 

11.4. In cooperation with ITF, consider the opportunity for ETF to be represented in the regional fisheries bodies where possible. 

11.5. Create the conditions for an internal dialogue on the serious situation of fisheries in the Mediterranean and possible joint action of interested affiliates. 

The ETF as an industrial and Organising Force 
12. Objectives: Increase the employment of young workers and women in the sector and improve the public image and reputation of fishers 12.1. Advocate for the removal of the legislative obstacles that are an obstacle to the modernisation of fishing vessels. 

12.2. Demand, through political campaign and social dialogue that working conditions and pay of fishers in Europe are protected and improved. 

12.3. Defend recognition of skills and highlight training fishers needs at EU and national levels through political campaign. 

12.4. Demand, through political campaign and in the social dialogue, that migrant fishers in the EU have the same level of basic training and certifications. 

12.5. Explore the possibility to discuss in social dialogue the adoption of a social partners ethical code of conduct, where employers commit themselves to respect quality principles of collective bargaining, social dialogue and working conditions. 

Adopted by the ETF Fisheries Section on 15 November 2021.